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FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CHANGES 

RESULTING FROM CONSTRUCTION OF A NINE-FOOT CHANNEL 

ON POOLS 24, 25, AND 26 OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER AND 

THE LOWER ILLINOIS RIVER 



by 

Richard E. Sparks, Ph.D., Aquatic Specialist 

Frank C. Bellrose, D.Sc, Wildlife Specialist 

F.L. Paveglio, Jr., M.S., Wildlife Assistant 

M.J. Sandusky, M.S.. Aquatic Assistant 

D.W. Steffeck, M.S., Wildlife Assistant 

CM. Thompson, B.S., Aquatic Assistant 



Illinois Natural History Survey 

River Research Laboratory 

Havana, Illinois 62644 



Prepared for U.S. Army Engineer District, St. Louis 
Under Purchase Order Numbers LMSSD 77-2S97 and 77-2942 



April 1979 



FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CHANGES 

RESULTING FROM CONSTRUCTION OF A NINE-FOOT CHANNEL 

ON POOLS 24, 25, AND 26 OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER AND 

THE LOWER ILLINOIS RIVER 



by 

Richard E. Sparks, Ph.D., Aquatic Specialist 

Frank C. Bellrose, D.Sc, Wildlife Specialist 

F.L. Paveglio, Jr., M.S., Wildlife Assistant 

M.J. Sandusky, M.S., Aquatic Assistant 

D.W. Steffeck, M.S., Wildlife Assistant 

CM. Thompson, B.S., Aquatic Assistant 



Illinois Natural History Survey 

River Research Laboratory 

Havana, Illinois 62644 



Prepared for U.S. Army Engineer District, St. Louis 
Under Purchase Order Numbers LMSSD 77-2897 and 77-2942 



April 1979 



CONTENTS 

Page 

TABLE OF CONTENTS i 

LIST OF TABLES iv 

LIST OF FIGURES i* 

PART I: INTRODUCTION 1 

PART II: MATERIALS AND METHODS 5 

Aquatic Communities and Water Quality 

Sedimentation 7 

Terrestrial Communities 

Wetland Plants 7 

Population Data 7 

PART III: RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 9 

Aquatic Communities 9 

Plankton — Mississippi River 9 

Phytoplankton — Illinois River 11 

Zooplankton — Illinois River 18 

Benthos — Illinois River 20 
Possible Effects of Barge Traffic on Benthos 

in the Illinois River 25 

Benthos — Mississippi River 28 

Historical Perspective 28 

Pre-Dam and Post-Dam Surveys 28 

Species Composition Changes 29 

Effects of the Navigation System on Benthos 29 
Importance of Benthos as Food for Fish 

and Wildlife 31 

Recent Changes in the Benthos 32 

Commercial Mussel Fishery — Illinois River _ 33 

Historical Perspective 33 

Pre- and Post-Dam Mussel Harvests 34 

Species Composition Changes 36 
Economic Factors Affecting the Commercial 

Mussel Fishery 39 
Effects of the Navigation System on the 

Mussel Fauna 40 



Page 

Commercial Mussel Fishery — Mississippi River 45 

Historical Perspective 45 

Pre- and Post-Dam Mussel Harvests 45 

Species Composition Changes 49 

Economic Factors 52 

Recent Trends 53 
Effects of the Navigation System on the 

Mussel Fauna 54 

Commercial Fishery — Illinois River 56 

Historical Perspective 56 
Effects of the Navigation System on the 

Commercial Fishery 64 

Commercial Fishery — Mississippi River 67 

Historical Perspective 67 
Pre- and Post-Construction Statistics on 

Harvests and Number of Fishermen, 1894-1970 68 

Changes in Species Composition, 1894-1970 73 
Recent Trends in the Commercial Fishery 
Economic Factors Affecting the Commercial 
Fishery 



39 



Sport Fishery — Illinois River • 94 

Sport Fishery — Mississippi River 104 



Scientific Surveys of Fish Species Present in 
1876-1903 and 1944-1971 in the Upper Mis- 
sissippi River 
Summary of Effects of the Nine-Foot Navigation 

System on Fish in the Upper Mississippi River 
Effects of Increased Water Area and 

Reduced Discharge 117 

Effects of Dams on Fish Migration 119 

Effects of Winter Drawdowns 119 

Effects of Other Operation and Maintenance 

Activities - 121 

Wetland Vegetation 122 

Effects of Fluctuating Water Levels 122 

The Effects of Sedimentation and Turbidity 126 

Water Quality 129 

Upper Mississippi River 129 

Dissolved Oxygen 130 

Turbidity, Suspended Sediment, and Water 

Clarity 133 



111 

116 



Page 

Nutrients (Ammonia-nitrogen, Nitrate-nitro- 
gen, Nitrite-nitrogen, and Total 

Phosphorus) 136 

Heavy Metals and Pesticides 137 

Illinois River 138 

Sediment l 4i 

Terrestrial Communities 151 

Waterfowl 151 

Bald Eagle 161 

Herons and Their Allies 161 

Cormorants 166 

Shorebirds and Related Species 168 

Other Game Species 171 

Other Avifauna 171 

Muskrat 172 

Beaver 174 

Raccoon 177 

Mink 182 

Other Furbearers 183 

White-Tailed Deer I 83 

Squirrels I 85 
Rabbits 



187 



PART IV: SUMMARY 188 

LITERATURE CITED 197 

APPENDIX: Table 56 210 



iii 



LIST OF TABLES 



Table Page 

1 Comparison of Phytoplankton Populations in the Main 
Channel of the Illinois River in 1898 and 1974 12 

2 Comparison of Zooplankton Populations in the Main 
Channel of the Illinois River in 1898 and 1974 19 

3 Average Density of Benthic Organisms in River Border 
and Side Channel Habitats Along the Lower 80 Miles of 

the Illinois River in 1915, 1964, 1974, and 1975 22 

4 Average Density of Benthic Organisms in the Main 
Channel of the Lower 80 Miles of the Illinois River 

in 1915 and 1974 24 

5 Weight and Value of the Mussel Catch from the 

Illinois River, 1908-1970 35 

6 Kinds of Mussels Taken Alive from the Illinois River 
in the Vicinity of Meredosia in 1912, 1930, 

1955, and 1966 37 

7 . Weight and Value of the Mussel Catch, Mississippi 

River and Associated Waters, 1894-1972 47 

8 Mussel Species Reported from Mississippi River in 

1906, 1931, and 1975-76 50 

9 Summary of the Commercial Catch of Fish from the 
Illinois River and the Mississippi River Bordering 
Illinois, and the Number of Full-Time Fishermen, 
1950-1974 57 

10 Calculated Wholesale (Undressed) Prices Paid to 
Illinois River Commercial Fishermen for Catches of 
Carp, Buffalo, Channel Catfish, and Freshwater Drum 
in 1894, 1899, 1922, 1931, 1950, 1955, 1960, 1965, 

and 1970 53 

11 Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest of Carp, 
Buffalo, Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All 
Commercial Soecies from Alton Pool, Illinois River, 
1950-1970 63 



iv 



Table Page 

12 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by 
Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River Com- 
mercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1894 69 

13 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by 
Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1899 70 

14 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1922 71 

15 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1931 72 

16 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1950 73 

17 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1955 74 

18 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1960 75 

19 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and' 
Frogs from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois 

by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1965 76 

20 The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and 
Frogs from the Mississippi River 3ordering Illinois 
by Illinois Fishermen and Number of Mississippi River 
Commercial Fishermen Licensed in Illinois in 1970 

21 Factors for Converting 1890-1976 Dollars to July 

1977 Dollars 79 



Table 



22 A Comparison of the Fish Harvest by Illinois Com- 
mercial Fishermen from a Pooled Section of the Mis- 
sissippi River (Pools 12-26) and an Unpooled Section 
(Alton to Cairo, Illinois), 1950-1970 83 

23 Reported Number of Full-Time and Part-Time Illinois 
Commercial Fishermen Actively Engaged in River Fishing 
on the Illinois, Mississippi, and All Illinois Rivers, 
1950-1970 84 

24 Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest of Carp, 
Buffalo, Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All 
Commercial Species from Pool 24, Mississippi River, 
1953-1976 85 

25 Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest of Carp, 
Buffalo, Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All 
Commercial Species from Pool 25, Mississippi River, 
1953-1976 86 

26 Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest of Carp, 
Buffalo, Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All 
Commercial Species from Pool 26, Mississippi River, 
1953-1976 87 

27 Calculated Wholesale (Undressed) Prices Paid to 
Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen Licensed in 
Illinois for Catches of Carp, Buffalo, Channel Cat- 
fish, and Freshwater Drum in 1894, 1899, 1922, 1931, 
1950, 1955, 1960, 1965, and 1970 92 

28 Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Dav in Meredosia Lake 

in 1931 and 1934 ' 95 

29 Number of Fish Caught per Net-Day in the Lower 

Illinois River in 1942 96 

30 Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower 

Illinois River near Meredosia in 1934, 1942, and 1967 98 

31 Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower 

Illinois River near Hardin in 1942, 1964, and 1967 99 

32 Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower 

Illinois River near the Mouth in 1942 and 1967 100 

33 Summary of Creel Data for Pool 26 of the Upper 
Mississippi River for 1956-1957, 1962-1963, 1967- 

1968, and 1972-1973 106 



vi 



Table Page 

34 Species Composition of Sport Catch and Ranking 
by Numbers Caught During Creel Census Periods in 
Pool 26 of the Mississippi River in 1962-1963, 
1967-1968, and 1972-1973 107 

35 Numbers and Percent Composition of Game, Forage, and 
Commercial Fish Collected per Hour of Electrofishing 
in the Tailwaters of Locks and Dams 24, 25, and 26, 
Mississippi River During 1971 109 

36 Number and Percent Composition of Game, Forage, and 
Commercial Fish Collected per Hour of Electrofishing 
in the Tailwaters of Locks and Dams 24, 25, and 26, 
Mississippi River During 1971 110 

37 A Comparison of Fish Species Present in the Illinois 
River and Upper Mississippi River (Pools 12-26) for 
Periods Before and After Construction of the Nine- 
Foot Channel Navigation System 112 

38 Acres of Aquatic Vegetation at Flat and Swan Lakes, 

Pool 26, Illinois River, 1941-1944 123 

39 Acres of Aquatic Vegetation at Gilbert Lake, Pool 26, 
.Illinois River, 1941-1944 124 

40 Number of Municipal and Industrial Sources of Pollution 

in the Major Drainage Basins of Illinois in 1927 131 

41 Turbidity of Lake Chautauqua During High River 

Stages and 0-5 mph Wind on 10 May 1977 148 

42 Bald Eagle Census Data for the Mississippi River, 

Pool 24 162 

43 Bald Eagle Census Data for the Mississippi River, 

Pool 25 163 

44 Bald Eagle Census Data for the Mississippi River, 

Pool 26 164 

45 Bald Eagle Census Data for the Lower Illinois River, 

Pool 26 165 

46 Location and Size of Common Egret and Great Blue 

Heron Nesting Colonies in Pools 24, 25, and 26 167 

47 Cormorant Census Data for Pools 24, 25, and 26, 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, 1968-1977 169 



vii 



Table ?age 

48 Shorebirds and Related Species 170 

49 Fur Harvest and Average Pelt Prices for the State 

of Missouri and the Northeast Portion of Missouri 175 

50 Missouri Fur Harvest for Counties in the Study Area, 
1951-1977: Ralls County 178 

51 Missouri Fur Harvest for Counties in the Study Area, 
1951-1977: Pike County 179 

52 Missouri Fur Harvest for Counties in the Study Area, 
1951-1977: Lincoln County 180 

53 Missouri Fur Harvest for Counties in the Study Area, 
1951-1977: St. Charles County 181 

54 Illinois Deer Kill Figures for Counties Bordering 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, Pools 24, 25, and 26 184 

55 Missouri Deer Kill Figures for Counties Bordering 

the Mississippi River, Pools 24, 25, and 26 186 

56 List of Common and Scientific Names 210 



viii 



PART I: INTRODUCTION 

The purpose of this report is to compare the fish and wildlife 
habitat in Pools 24 and 25 of the Mississippi River and Pool 25 of the Mississippi 
and lower Illinois Rivers from before to after construction of 
the navigation dams. The dates of construction and first operation are 
given below (U.S. Army Engineer District, St. Louis, 1975: 4-13): 



Lock and Dam 
Number 


Construction 
Initiated 


Operational 


Normal Pool 
Level Reached 


24 


20 July 1936 


12 March 1940 


14 May 1940 


25 


12 November 1935 


18 May 1939 


11 July 1939 


26 


13 January 1934 


1 May 1938 


8 August 1938 



The study reach of the Mississippi River extends from Alton, 
Illinois upstream for 98.3 miles to near Saverton, Missouri (Figures 1 
and 2). Charts of the upper Mississippi River have been prepared by 
the U.S. Army Engineer Division, North Central, Chicago, Illinois (1975) 
and locations are given in river miles, starting from mile 0.0 at the 
intersection of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers near Cairo, Illinois and 
proceeding upstream to a point just above Minneapolis-St . Paul, Minnesota. 
The study area of the Mississippi River used in this report extends from 
Mississippi River mile 202.9 to 301.2. The navigational locks and dams 
along the river impound waters, called pools, which provide convenient 
reference to the geographic location of various sections of the study area 
(see Figures 1 and 2) . 

The lower part of the Illinois is influenced by Dam 26 on the Mis- 
sissippi. Charts of the Illinois Waterway have been prepared by the 
U.S. Army Engineer District, Chicago (1974) and locations are likewise 
given in river miles, starting from mile 0.0 at the confluence of the 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, at Grafton, Illinois, and proceeding up- 
stream to Chicago. The study reach cf the Illinois River extends from 
mile 0.0 upstream to the LaGrange Lock and Dam at mile 80.3. Along both 



LaGrange Locks and Dam 



Meredosia 



Hannibal 



Saverton «V\Locks 

x and Dam 22 



ILLINOIS 



MISSOURI 



North 




Locks and 



lton 



Scale in Miles 
(3 5 10 15 



ocks and Dam 
6 



St. Louis 



Figure 1. Map of the study area, showing the locks, dams, towns, and cities. 



LaGrange Locks and Dam 

Meredosia Island Refuge (F) 
Lake Meredosia 



ILLINOIS 



Ted Shanks Refuge (F) 



MISSOURI 



North 




y The Glades (S) 

F > Batchtown Refuge-^) \jJ> tum P Lake < S > 
Locks and Dam 25 



Scale in Miles 
5 10 15 



Figure 2. Map of the study area showing the bottomland lakes, wildlife 
refuges, and state parks. 
(F) = Federal refuge. 
(S) = State refuge. 



rivers, mileages are often given on navigation aids, such as buoys, 
markers, and lights. 

Both rivers have been subject to a variety of influences besides 
the construction of the locks and dams associated with the 9-foot navi- 
gation channel. For example, the navigational improvements associated 
with the 4%-foot channel and the 6-foot channel on the Mississippi 
River caused some long-term changes in the morphometry and hydrology 
of the river (U.S. Army Engineer District, St. Louis, 1975: 2-3). Both 
rivers were subjected to increasing sediment loads as agriculture in- 
tensified in the drainage basin, and to increasing pollution loads as 
population centers increased. Virtually the entire Illinois River was 
affected following the 1900 diversion of sewage effluent from Chicago 
into the upper reaches of the river. Draining and leveeing of the 
floodplain has markedly reduced the amount of natural habitat. Insofar 
as possible, we have tried to sort out the effects attributable to the 
nine-foot navigation project from the other effects, but many of our 
conclusions are necessarily of a qualitative, rather than a quantitative 
nature. Another handicap was that maps and tables showing the acreage 
of wetland and aquatic habitat existing before and after construction of 
the navigation dams did not become available until after our report was 
completed. 



PART II: MATERIALS AND METHODS 
Aquatic Communities and Water Quality 

We conducted a literature search to find published information on 
aquatic communities and water quality in the study area before and 
after the dams were constructed. Unpublished results of biological 
surveys on the Illinois River were available in the files of the 
River Research Laboratory at Havana. Some recent unpublished informa- 
tion on water quality, benthos, and plankton in Meredosia Lake was 
obtained from the Water Quality Section of the Illinois State Water 
Survey at Peoria. A pre-publication version of a compendium on the 
fisheries of the upper Mississippi River was supplied by Mr. Jerry 
Rasmussen, coordinator, Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee. 
We also contacted fishery biologists in the Illinois and Missouri 
Conservation Departments. Mr. Larry Dunham, special projects staff 
biologist, Fisheries Division of the Illinois Department of Conservations 
graciously supplied recent statistics on the commercial fishery and a 
copy of a Ph.D. dissertation, "The Development and Current Status of the 
Upper Mississippi River Commercial Fishery" (Sullivan, 1971). 

In order to identify the immediate and direct effects of construc- 
tion of the navigation dams, we tried to find water quality and biological 
surveys which had been done just prior to, and just after the dams were 
constructed. In some cases, the only available pre- and post-impoundment 
data were widely separated in time. We used these data, if the sampling 
methods were comparable, and tried to distinguish changes attributable 
to navigation from changes attributable to other factors, such as 
pollution. If information was not available on the study area, we 
tried to find information on comparable areas outside the study area. 



Finally, we looked at not only information obtained just after 
completion of the dams, but all readily available information collected 
since that time, in order to assess any long-term or indirect impacts 
of the nine-foot navigation project, such as those effects which might 
be associated with barge traffic. 



Sedimentation 

In order to determine the rate of sedimentation and fill of Lake 
Meredosia located on Pool 26 of the Illinois River (river miles 72-78) , 
six depth transects were taken. Depths were taken through the ice at 
approximately 200-foot intervals with an aluminum pole fitted with a 4.5- 
inch diameter aluminum foot. The depths were correlated with the Illi- 
nois River gauge at Meredosia to determine mean sea level elevations. 

The sedimentation and fill rates were calculated by comparing our 
depths with those recorded in 1903 by W.J. Woerman, U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers, and depths recorded by the Illinois Division of Waterways in 
1956. The water depths from the Woerman maps were converted from Memphis 
Datum to MSL (1929 general adjustment) by subtracting the conversion 
factor of 7.345. 

Terrestrial Communities 

Wetland Plants 

Aquatic and moist soil plant acreages were obtained by planimetering 
vegetation maps. These maps had been drawn using inspection and rough 
triangulation by Frank Bellrose from 1941 through 1944. Species were 
listed according to taxonomic order from Gray's New Manual of Botany 
(1908). Changes in vegetation from 1946-1976 were procured from annual 
narrative reports of the area managers for the Mark Twain National 
Wildlife Refuge. A recent study of vegetation (Klein et al., 1975) in the study 
area was reviewed. 
Population Data 

The population data for waterfowl, cormorants, and bald eagles were 
obtained from the 1956-1977 fall waterfowl censuses made by the Illinois 
Natural History Survey. Waterfowl use was expressed as duck days. This 
was calculated by totaling the weekly censuses from October 1 through 
December 1 and multiplying by seven. Each duck-day represents one duck 
spending one day in the study area. Bird population data for the 



Meredosia, Batchtown, and Calhoun divisions of Mark Twain National 
Wildlife Refuge from October 1975 to October 1976 were taken from 
Wildlife Information Reports. Great blue heron and common egret nest 
counts were taken from unpublished data obtained from R.R. Graber, J.W. 
Graber, and data collected by Frank Bellrose. 

Information on the number of deer killed during the 1974, 1975, 
and 1976 hunting seasons was acquired from Forrest Loomis, forest 
game biologist for the Illinois Department of Conservation. The 
deer kill information from Missouri was obtained from Wayne Porath, 
deer biologist, Missouri Department of Conservation. Furbearer har- 
vest figures for Missouri were procured from Dave Erickson, small game 
biologist, Missouri Department of Conservation. Narrative reports 
for the Calhoun and Batchtown units of the Mark Twain National Wildlife 
Refuge were obtained from the refuge manager, George Payton, and the 
Quincy headquarters. 



PART III: RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 
Aquatic Communities 

Plankton — Mississippi River 

We were not able to find any surveys of the plankton in the study 
reach of the Mississippi prior to 1930. Consequently, we have no way 
of comparing plankton populations before and after construction of the 
navigation dams. We can hypothesize that the navigation dams, by making 
portions of the Mississippi River more lake-like, may have increased 
the population of truly planktonic forms which live in the water column, 
as opposed to forms which live attached to the substrate and appear in 
the water column as the result of scouring. 

An excellent survey of phytoplankton and zooplankton in the study 
reach was conducted in 1974 by Colbert et al. (1975) , and they also 
provide a review of other recent plankton studies. Colbert et al. 
(1975: Table 2) took plankton samples from both main channel and side 
channel habitats at 13 locations in the Mississippi between river miles 
201.3 and 302.2. Samples were taken at the beginning of July, 1974 
during a period when water levels were declining from flood stage and 
again in mid-September, after water levels had been stable at approxi- 
mately the 31-year average level since the end of July (Colbert et al. , 
1975: Figure 3). 

They found that the density of phytoplankton in the main channel 
increased more than 100 times between July and September, although 
nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) were higher in July (Colbert et al. , 
1975: 51, 53). The increase in phytoplankton during the period of stable 
water levels was attributed to decreases in: (1) turbidity, (2) current 
velocity, (3) mechanical destruction of algae, and (4) dilution of 
algal populations by direct rainfall and surface and groundwater runoff 
(Colbert et al. , 1975: 48, 51). 

An isolated bloom of green algae (primarily Tetraedron minimum ) 
occurred at river mile 215.5 in September. The density of green algae 



exceeded 521,000/1 at this station, located just below the Illinois 
River confluence, but T_. minimum occurred at a density of only 123/1 
at a side channel station Immediately upstream at Mississippi River 
mile 220.7, and no T_. minimum occurred in samples below river mile 
215.1 on the Mississippi, or at Illinois River mile 23.1, just upstream 
from the confluence (Colbert et al. , 1975: 51). 

Colbert et al. (1975: 54) concluded that the side channels played 
a major role in the productivity of the Mississippi River: 



119. It is apparent that side channels are a very important 
habitat in the Upper Mississippi River, particularly during 
high-flow periods. They provide refuge in the form of slower 
moving waters, which leads to increased plankton abundance, 
which in turn provides a food source for phytoplankton feeders 
such as zooplankton, certain benthic insects, and particularly 
planktivorus fishes such as paddlefish, shad, and larval fishes. 

120. During reduced river stages, the impounded river 
channel becomes increasingly important as abundance of phyto- 
plankton increases due to larger areas of slack water and 
associated reduced turbidity. Some side channels (river mile 
201.3) have less input to the river proper since they actually 
become cut off from the river during low stages. 



Colbert et_ al. (1975: 66) reached the following conclusions re- 
garding zooplankton: 



Based on statistical analyses . . . , it was determined that 
total zooplankton density, zooplankton species diversity, 
and concentrations of Cladocera, Copepods, and Rotifera 
increased significantly between July (high flow) and Sep- 
tember (low flow) . Evenness index showed the reverse trend 
in that it decreased significantly between July and Septem- 
ber. Statistical treatment of data combined for both 
sampling periods indicated that only the rotifers were sig- 
nificantly greater in side channel habitats. 



Colbert et al. (1975: 61) indicated that the difference in flow 
regimes prior to the July and September sampling was the main reason 
for the marked difference in zooplankton populations in the main 
channel: 



10 



138. Mean total density for the main channel stations was 
2.5/1 during July compared to a total of 28.0/1 during Septem- 
ber .... This corresponds to the same trend observed for 
phytoplankton among main channel stations. The obvious over- 
riding factor limiting zooplankton is flow rate. Zooplankton 
collected during high flow were from populations carried 
downstream from calm backwater areas, where reproduction could 
occur, and were greatly diluted in numbers by the rapid current 
created by surface runoff. The most abundant group found in 
the highly turbid waters characteristic of the July sampling 
period were the Copepoda, and they were present at a mean 
density of only 1.5/1. 

139. The September sampling period followed a 49-day period 
of average river stage at Alton, Illinois . . . and the main 
channel was more lake-like due to closing of navigation dams. 
The observed density increase during this period was related 

to an increase in density of all three phyla, particularly 
Rotifera, which increased more than 20 times the density 
observed for this group in July .... 

140. Mean number of taxa increased by a factor of four 
between sampling periods .... This increase is attributed 
to improved habitat conditions brought about by decreased flow 
and turbidity and increased phytoplankton abundance. 

Zooplankton diversity and density also increased in side channel 
habitats between July and September, due to a reduction in flow during 
August and September (Colbert e_t al. , 1975: 65). 

Phytoplankton — Illinois River 

Between June 12, 1894 and March 28, 1899 Dr. Charles A. Kofoid 
took 235 samples of plankton from the main channel of the Illinois 
River near Havana, at mile 128.5 (Kofoid, 1903: 291-340; Kofoid, 1904: 
314-340), and in 1899 made one survey which included the lower 80 
miles of the Illinois (Kofoid, 1903: 273-283). Biologists from WAPORA 
(WAPORA, 1974) took plankton samples from the Illinois River at 
Meredosia in September, 1973. The only post-dam survey of the plankton 
in the study reach of the Illinois River we have been able to locate 
was conducted by Colbert et al. (1975) in 1974. Although the two surveys were 
separated by a span of seventy-five years , the sampling methods used were strikingly 
similar, and the results are probably comparable, for the reasons given below. 

We used Kofoid 's data for the year 1898 (Kofoid, 1904: 314-340) 
for comparison with the 1974 data of Colbert et al . (1975: E29-E36) . 



11 



Kofoid took plankton samples at one-week intervals throughout the 
year in 1898, and the hydrograph for that year was "normal" (Kofoid, 
1904: 18). We used only the samples Kofoid had taken in September in 
the main channel, under stable low-flow conditions. The September 
samples of Colbert et al. were likewise taken under stable, low-flow 
conditions. Although Kofoid' s samples were taken upstream from 
the study area, he conducted four studies (Kofoid, 1903: 273-283) of 
the longitudinal distribution of plankton in the river (one study 
included the lower 80 miles of the Illinois) and concluded that the 
plankton in the main channel was remarkably uniform. Hence, Kofoid 's 
samples from the Havana area are probably generally representative of 
the main channel in both the middle and lower reaches of the Illinois 
River. 

Kofoid used a pump to take an integrated vertical sample of 
water from the main channel. He pumped 250 liters of water through 
a plankton net made of Number 20 silk bolting-cloth. Colbert 
et al. (1975: 25) also took an -integrated sample, consisting of 30 
liters of water collected from the surface, mid-depth, and bottom 
of the water column, with a three-liter Van Dorn bottle. The water 
was poured through a Number 20 plankton net. Kofoid also used paper 
filters to collect the small plankton that passed through the Number 
20 net. The number of organisms per liter trapped on the filter 
paper was sometimes 3 to 4 orders of magnitude greater than the number 
trapped in the plankton net (Kofoid, 1904: 314-340). Fortunately, 
Kofoid separated the counts obtained with the filter paper from the 
counts obtained with the net (Kofoid, 1904: Table I, 314-340), so the 
results reported in our Table 1 and Table 2 for the years 1898 and 
1974 were both obtained using Number 20 plankton nets. 

Although Table 1 shows that the number of species of phytoplankton 
apparently increased from 28 in 1898 to 68 in 1974, the increase is 
attributable to advances in the taxonomy of algae, rather than to a 
real change in the population. Kofoid (1904: 11-12) was well aware 
of the taxonomic uncertainties and limitations existing in the 1890' s, 
and indicated that he probably underestimated the actual number of 

12 



species present: 

During the progress of this work, which was begun in 1894, 
every effort was made to secure all pertinent literature bearing 
on the genera of plants and animals represented in the plank- 
ton, and so far as possible in the enumeration of the col- 
lections the individuals were referred to "species" already ^ 
described, or, in default of this, recorded as unidentified. 
In some groups — notably the desmids, diatoms, and unicel- 
lular algae — it was not possible under the conditions of 
plankton enumeration to apply to all the individuals enumera- 
ted the fine distinctions which specialists in these groups 
have made. ... the difficulty lies not so much in finding 
representatives of these closely related species, but, rather, 
in drawing the lines between them and placing every individual 
enumerated in the proper pigeon-hole. To avoid this difficulty, 
the separation was not attempted in every case. 

In Table 1, the increase in the number of species of diatoms (Bacil- 
lariophyta ) in particular from four species in 1898 to 40 species in 
1974 has more to do with the publication of The Diatoms of the United 
stat es (Patrick and Reimer, 1966) than with a real change in the 
phytoplankton. 

The number of algae per liter, taken in Number 20 plankton nets, 
apparently did decline dramatically from an average of 176,887 in 1898 
to 3,230 in 1974 (Table 1 ) . The number of diatoms (Bacillariophyta) 
remained about the same, while the green algae (Chlorophyta) declined 
by a factor of 10 and the blue-green algae (Cyanophyta) declined by 
a factor of 1,000. Note that the results obtained by Colbert et al. at mile 2.5 
(1975: E-28) were excluded from Table 1 because the number of organisms 
and number of species were much lower than at their other six sampling 
stations. The reduction in current velocity associated with the 
construction of the dam at Alton should have favored the green and 
blue-green algae. However, the potentially beneficial effects of the 
dam on phytoplankton have apparently been overridden by the increasing 
turbidity of the river (Mills et al. , 1966: 7). Turbidity reduces 
light penetration, thus depressing photosynthesis by algae, and the 
suspended sediment may physically abrade algae. 

13 



Table 1 

Comparison of Phytoplankton Populations in the Main Channel of 
tnd 1974, Unde 

in September^ 



the Illinois River in 1898 and 1974^ Under Stable Low-flow Conditions 



Major Taxonomic Divisions 

Chlorophyta (desmids, green algae) 
Bacillariophyta (diatoms) 
Chrysophyta (yellow-brown algae) 
Cyanophyta (blue-green algae) 
Euglenophyta (euglenoid algae) 
Pyrrophyta (dinoflagellates) 
Total 







Number 


of 


Number 


of 


Individuals 


Species 


1974 C 


Per 


Liter 


1898 b 


1898 d 




1974 e 


9 


19 


6,907 




550 


4 


40 


2,544 




2,455 


2 


- 


2 




- 


3 


3 


167,400 




166 


8 


6 


32 




59 


2 


- 


2 




- 


28 


68 


176,887 




3,230 



^ata were obtained from Kofoid, 1904: 314-340, and Colbert et al. , 1975: 
E29-E36. Although Kofoid* s samples were taken upstream from the study 
area, he conducted four studies (Kofoid, 1903: 273-283) of the longitudinal 
distribution of plankton in the river (one study included the lower 80 
miles of the Illinois) and concluded that the plankton in the main channel 
was remarkably uniform. Hence, Kofoid 's samples from the Havana area are 
probably generally representative of the main channel in the fall of 1898. 
Both Kofoid and Colbert et al. (1975) used no. 20 plankton nets. Kofoid 
also collected plankton on filter paper, but these results are excluded 
from the table because Colbert et al. did not use micro-filtration. 

The total number of species taken on Sept. 6, 13, 20, and 27, 1898 at 
one sampling station in the Illinois River near Havana (mile 128.5). 

C The total number of species taken at six sampling stations (miles 23.1, 
45.6, 57.6, 58.3, 77.0, and 81.0) in the lower Illinois River. The station 
at mile 2.5 was excluded because the number of species was much lower than 
at the other six stations. 

The total number of individuals taken in the four collections in September, 
1898, was divided by four to obrain an average density. 

The total number of individuals taken at six locations (excluding the 
atypical results from river mile 2.5) was divided by six to obtain an 
average density. 

14 



Another comparison of Kofoid's 1898 data with a more recent survey 
shows a decline in blue-green algae, but not in green algae or in total 
number of algae. WAPORA (1974: 11-12) took 14 10-liter samples of water 
during low-flow conditions on September 13 and 21, 1973 at Meredosia 
(river mile 71). The water was passed through a ten-micron mesh nano- 
plankton net, which would trap small plankton. The results may approxi- 
mate those Kofoid obtained by using filter paper. The WAPORA biologists 
took all of their samples from the surface. If the water column were 
uniformly mixed, the samples would be comparable to those taken by 
Kofoid. However, if more plankton occurred on the surface than in 
deeper water, the WAPORA method would overestimate the abundance of 
plankton in the water column. 

Number Per Liter 
1898 a _ 1973 b 

75,430 
252,214 
2,140 
30,930 
360,714 

kofoid, 1904: 314-340. Includes filter paper collections. 
b WAP0RA, 1974: D53-D54. Average of 14 samples taken Sept. 13 and 21, 1973. 

The above table shows that when small algae are included in the 
plankton collections, the total number of algae has not shown a 
decline between 1898 and 1973. However, there apparently has been a 
marked decline in blue-green algae (Table 1 shows the same trend for 
large blue-green algae) , which has been compensated for by increases 
in other groups, most notably in diatoms. Many phycologists believe 
diatoms are more tolerant of reduced light penetration and increased 
abrasion associated with suspended sediment than other types of algae 
(Colbert et al. , 1975: 59). Some species of blue-green algae are 
considered nuisances when they grow to bloom proportions in nutrient- 
rich waters. The reasons for the marked decline in blue-green algae 
in the lower Illinois River are unknown. 



15 



Chlorophyta (green algae) 


43,877 


Bacillariophyta (diatoms) 


153,811 


Cyanophyta (blue-green algae) 


167,605 


Others 


18,544 


Total 


383,837 



Williams (1964: 813, 815) reported peak, numbers of diatoms in the 
Illinois River at Grafton were 1,600,000 to 3,199,000 per liter in 1961- 
62, and at Peoria were 6,400,000 to 12,799,000 per liter in 1960-61 
and 3,200,000 to 6,399,000 per liter in 1961-62. Williams' (1964: 811) 
collecting techniques captured all cells 4 microns or larger. His 
numbers are considerably higher than those obtained by other investigators, 
who used collecting techniques which would retain only larger diatoms 
and other types of algae. For example, WAPORA (1974: 11) used 10-micron 
mesh nanoplankton nets and Colbert e_t al . (1975: 25) used No. 20, 
81-micron mesh plankton nets. Although Starrett (1972: 152) compared 
Williams' 1960-62 data at Peoria to unpublished data collected in 1964, 
1969, and 1970, it is not certain that the sampling methods were the 
same. The unpublished counts (numbers per liter) reported by Starrett 
(1972: 152) were: 7,000,000 to 233,000,000 in 1964; 6,800,000 to 
108,000,000 in 1969; and 8,500,000 to 117,000,000 in 1970. Starrett 
(1972: 152) reported that the decline in phytoplankton in the mid-1960's 
was associated with a sharp decrease in the abundance of blue-greens , 
while diatoms remained the dominant group. He suggested that the phyto- 
plankton of the entire river might be limited by turbidity and the 
synergistic effects of toxic metals. Williams (1964: 819) attributed 
the high phytoplankton counts in the Illinois River to nutrient enrichment 
and high calcium hardness. 

We do not feel that the reduction in algal populations is attribu- 
table to toxicity, because diatoms are as sensitive as, or even more 
sensitive than, other groups of algae. For example, Wong et al. 
(1978: 479) found that a diatom was more sensitive to metal toxicity 
than blue-green and green algae. Colbert et al . (1975: 59-60) found 
few statistical differences between phytoplankton populations in the 
lower Illinois and Mississippi rivers. Blue-green algae were approxi- 
mately five times more abundant in the Mississippi than in the lower 
Illinois, and phytoplankton evenness was slightly higher in the Illinois. 
The causes of these differences are uncertain, and the physical-chemical 
data reported by Colbert et al . (1975) for the two rivers do not show 
any marked differences in phytoplankton. Colbert et al. (1975: 37-38) 



16 



observed significantly hgiher values for surface dissolved oxygen, 
turbidity, and pH in the Mississippi, while mean total alkalinity was 
higher in the Illinois. Mean total alkalinity in bottom water 
was likewise higher in the Illinois, while bottom temperatures 
were higher in the Mississippi. Of the 17 water quality factors 
(including nutrients and toxic substances) measured in the surface 
and bottom waters of the Illinois and Mississippi rivers by Colbert 
et al. (1975: 43) only total phosphorus differed significantly between 
the two rivers, being greater in the Illinois River. Since phosphorus 
can stimulate blooms of blue-green algae, one might expect more blue- 
greens in the Illinois than in the Mississippi, whereas just the 
reverse was true. 

Significant differences between the two rivers in sediment con- 
centrations of nutrients, metals, and toxic substances were noted by 
Colbert et al. (1975: 46-47). Sediment in the Illinois River contained 
more total phosphorus, iron, and ammonia than the Mississippi. Sediment 
in the main channel of the Illinois contained detectable pesticide con- 
centrations whereas none were detected in the main channel of the 
Mississippi. PCB concentrations in sediment of the main channel 
of the Illinois were greater than in the Mississippi. 

The phytoplankton populations in the lakes along the lower 
Illinois River are probably much higher than in the river, due 
to the lack of current and perhaps to some reduction in turbidity. 
Butts (unpublished report, 1975: Table 3) found the average density 
of phytoplankton in Meredosia Lake on August 7-8, 1975, was 1.7 
million per liter and that diatoms and euglenoid algae dominated 
in different parts of the lake. 



17 



Zooplankton — Illinois River 



Table 2 shows that the number of zooplankters per liter in the 
main channel of the Illinois River apparently declined by a factor of 
8 between 1898 and 1974. The number of rotifers had declined dramati- 
cally, while the copepods had increased slightly. Comparison of 
Kofoid's 1898 results with those of WAPORA (1974: E8) in 1973, show 
the same trends : 



Number Per Liter 



1898 c 
386 



1973 L 
36 



388 



Rotifera 
Crustacea 

Branchiopoda 

Cladocera 
Copepoda 
Unidentified 

Total 

^ofoid, 1904: 314-340. 

b WAP0RA, 1974: E8. 

Present in very small numbers. 

The reasons for the decline of rotifers are not known, but one can 
speculate that the decline in phytoplankton and the increase in the 
suspended solids load of the lower Illinois River may have impaired the 
feeding of rotifers. Rotifers are an important food for the fry of 
many gamefish, such as bluegill, so the reductions noted above might 
have had a significant impact on the growth and survival of fish fry. 



Table 2 

Comparison of Zooplankton Populations In the Main Channel of 

the Illinois River in 1898 and 1974, Under Stable Low-flow Conditions 

in September 3 



Major Taxonomic Divisions 
Rotifera (rotifers) 
Crustacea (crustaceans) 



Number of 
Species 

1898 b 1974 c 



29 



10 



Number of 

Individuals 

Per Liter 



1898 c 



336 



1974* 



25 



Branchiopoda 

Cladocera (water 


fleas) 


5 


5 


2 


3 


Copepoda (copepods) 
Calanoida 
Cyclopoida 
Harpacticoida 




2 
4 
1 


1 

1 


f 
f 
f 


1 

17 


Total 




41 


17 


388 


46 



^)ata were obtained from Kofoid, 1904: 314-340, and Colbert et al. , 1975: 
F16-F20. Although Kofoid 's samples were taken upstream of the study 
area, he conducted four studies (Kofoid, 1903: 273-283) of the longitudinal 
distribution of plankton in the river (one study included the lower 80 
miles of the Illinois) and concluded that the plankton in the main chan- 
nel was remarkably uniform. Hence, Kofoid 's samples from the Havana area 
are probably generally representative of the main channel in the fall of 
1898. Both Kofoid and Colbert et al. (1975) used no. 20 plankton nets. 
Kofoid also collected plankton on filter paper, but these results are 
excluded from the table because Colbert et al. did not use micro-filtration. 

The total number of species taken on Sept. 6, 13, 20, and 27, 1898 at 
one sampling station in the Illinois River near Havana (mile 128.5). 

The total number of species taken at six sampling stations (miles 23.1, 
45.6, 57.6, 58.3, 77.0, and 81.0) in the lower Illinois River. The 
station at mile 2.5 was excluded because the number of species was much 
lower than at the other six stations. 

The total number of individuals taken in the four collections in 
September, 1898, was divided by four to obtain an average density. 

The total number of individuals taken at six locations (excluding the 
atypical results from river mile 2.5) was divided by six to obtain an 
average density. 

Present in very small numbers. 



19 



Benthos — Illinois River 

In 1915, Richardson (1921a: 490-493) took a total of seventy-three 
bottom samples between river miles 80.0 and 0.0. He used two types of 
iron dredges, which were hauled for distances of two or five feet along 
the bottom, and another device called a mud-dipper. He took care to de- 
termine the amount of bottom material and the number of organisms taken 
by each sampler in a series of parallel hauls, so that the results could 
be expressed in quantitative terms, as the number of organisms taken per 
unit of bottom area (Richardson, 1921a: 364). He also compared the ef- 
ficiency of his sampling devices with a Petersen grab sampler, a device 
still used today (for example, see Colbert et al., 1975: 23). 

In 1915, the study reach of the Illinois River had the lowest 
density and diversity of benthic organisms of any of the reaches Richardson 
studied (Richardson, 1921a: 404, 417). The biomass in this reach of 
the river was less than one-twenty-fifth of the average in the lower 
120 miles and less than one two-hundredth of the biomass in the vicinity 
of Havana (Richardson, 1921a: 410-412). Richardson (1921a: 474-475) 
gave the following reasons for the relative paucity of benthos in the 
study reach: (1) The bottom was well scoured and there was a lack 
of soft mud substrate due to higher current velocities, which in turn 
were attributable to a greater rate of fall in the main channel and 
confinement of the river between lateral levees. (2) The channel was 
dredged more frequently. (3) The absence of backwater areas (as a 
result of leveeing) concentrated the feeding activities of the annual 
upstream runs of large carp and buffalo in the spring. 

On January 1, 1900, the Sanitary and Ship Canal was opened at 
Chicago, connecting the DesPlaines and Illinois Rivers with Lake 
Michigan. The canal was used to flush municipal and industrial wastes 
into the Illinois River system and away from Chicago's municipal water 
intake in Lake Michigan. 

The quantity and quality of water diverted through the canal had 
a tremendous impact on the Illinois River. Water levels at Havana, 
Illinois (river mile 120) rose an average of 2.8 feet and, during the 



20 



normal low-flow period between June and September, rose 3.6 feet 
(Forbes and Richardson, 1919: 141 ). 

After approximately 1910, as the pollution load increased, cri- 
tically low dissolved oxygen levels in the water and putrescent con- 
ditions in the bottom muds occurred further and further downstream 
with detrimental effect on food organisms and fish (Richardson, 1921b: 33-36, 75). 
Richardson believed that in the 1915-1920 period the area in which the 
bottom fauna was drastically reduced or obliterated was expanding down- 
stream at the rate of 16 miles per year. By 1920, the bottom fauna in 
the river and bottomland lakes as far downstream as Browning (mile 
97.0) had been affected. Between 1923 and 1^25 there was a recovery 
in the benthos in the middle reach of the Illinois River (Richardson, 
1928: 401-402). 

Recent studies have shown that benthic populations in the middle 
reach of the Illinois River have again been reduced since the 1920' s. 
Sparks (1975: 53-54) and Anderson (1977: 47-54) have described the 
die-off of fingernail clams in the middle reach of the Illinois River. 
Anderson (1977: 47-48) noted that mayflies were absent from the 
samples taken in the middle reach of the river. Benthic studies 
conducted at three power plant sites on the middle and lower sections 
of the Illinois River showed that the greatest diversity of organisms 
was obtained in the lower reach at Meredosia (mile 70.8). 

Table 3 compares the average density of benthic organisms found 
by Richardson in river border and side channel habitats with the 
densities found in three more recent studies. Between 1915 and 1964 
the number of midges and oligochaete worms increased dramatically, 
perhaps indicating that the organic load in the river had increased, 
while the average dissolved oxygen levels had slightly decreased. Be- 
tween 1964 and the 1970 's, the oligochaete worms and midges declined to 
intermediate levels, while the mayflies increased substantially — 
these results probably indicate a decline in the organic load and an 
increase in the average dissolved oxygen level. The snails and finger- 
nail clams increased between 1915 and 1964, as did the leeches, some of 
which prey on clams and snails. Fingernail clams generally thrive in 



21 



Table 3 



Average Density of Benthlc Organisms (Number Per Square Meter) 

in River Border and Side Channel Habitats Along the Lower 80 Miles of 

the Illinois River in 1915, 1964, 1974, and 1975^ 



Turbellaria (flatworms) 

Hirudinea (leeches) 

Oligochaeta (worms) 

Gastropoda (snails) 

Pelecypoda (clams) 

Sphaeriidae (fingernail clams) 
Corbiculidae (Asiatic clams) 
Unionidae (mussels) 

Insecta (insects) 

Odonata (dragonf lies) 
Ephemeroptera (mayflies) 
Coleoptera (beetles) 
Trichoptera (caddisflies) 
Diptera (midges) 



because no samples from the main channel were taken in 1975 and 1964. 

1921a: 490-493. Fifty-nine samples were taken in August. 
Averages reported for three reaches of the river between mile 0.0 and 
80.0 were weighted according to sample size and then averaged. 



Illinois Natural History Survey at Havana. Ten samples were taken 
between river mile 19.3 and 30.8. 

1975: G15-G20. Nine samples were taken in September between 
river mile 81.0 and 2.5. Samples taken in side channels were included because 
side channels were sampled in the other surveys. One sample taken downstream 
from a dike was not included because this type of habitat was not sampled in 
the other surveys. 

e Anderson, 1977: 23. Twenty samples were taken in August between river 
miles 58.0 and 18.9. 

22 



1915 b 


1964 C 


1974 d 


1975 e 


0.2 




2.7 




0.2 


22 


0.7 




2.6 


2,579 


184.6 


245.4 


0.1 


34 






10.4 


52 


35.4 


19.4 






2.6 


19.4 


1.0 




1.1 




0.2 




1.9 




6.3 


4 


87.3 
8.1 


172.2 


2.2 




3.4 


2.2 


1.3 


353 


80.4 


90.4 



areas where there is a moderate amount of organic pollution and where 
soft mud bottoms are available. 

Between 1964 and the 1970' s, the fingernail clam populations de- 
clined slightly (the declines are very slight, and perhaps insignificant), 
Asiatic clams invaded the river, and the snails either disappeared 
entirely or were reduced to such low numbers that they did not show up 
in the recent collections. Asiatic clams were first found in the Illi- 
nois River in 1974 by Thompson and Sparks (1977: 34-36) and Colbert et 
al. (1975: G15-G19). The oldest Asiatic clams Thompson and Sparks found 
were 2- and 3-year-old clams, indicating that Corbicula first entered 
the Illinois River in 1970-1971. They may have been introduced in 
gravel delivered to a ferry landing at Kampsville (river mile 32) . We 
do not know whether the Asiatic clam will displace or compete with 
the native sphaerid fauna (Thompson and Sparks, 1978: 391). Asiatic 
clams do not appear to be as nutritious a food for fish and waterfowl 
as the native fingernail clam, Musculium transversum , but the Asiatic 
clam may furnish a food source in portions of the Illinois River where 
fingernail clams have been eliminated by pollution (Thompson and Sparks, 
1978: 394-395). 

Table 4 shows that the same trends which occurred in the river 
border and side channel habitats between 1915 and the 1970 's also oc- 
curred in the main channel: the midges, oligochaete worms, and may- 
flies increased, Asiatic clams appeared, and the snails disappeared. 
The increase in the numbers of organisms which burrow in the mud, such 
as the worms , midges , and burrowing mayflies ( Hexagenia and Pentagenia ) , 
indicates that the construction of the dam at Alton may have reduced 
the current velocity and caused some deposition of mud in the main channel. 
Other studies have confirmed the absence of snails in the lower Illinois 
River. No snails were found in an intensive 2-year study at a power 
plant site at Meredosia (WAPORA, 1974: Appendix C15-C26) . Butts (un- 
published report, 1975: 4-5) found no snails in a benthic survey of 
Meredosia Lake. Some toxic agent present in the lower Illinois River 
may be eliminating the snails. Sparks and Walter (unpublished data) 



23 



Table 4 

Average Density of Benthic Organisms (Number Per Square Meter) 
in the Main Channel of the Lower 80 Miles of the Illinois River 
in 1915 and 1974 



1915 c 



Turbellaria (flatworms) 0.6 

Hirudinea (leeches) 

Oligochaeta (worms) 3.1 37,0 

Gastropoda (snails) 0.3 

Pelecypoda (clams) 

Sphaeriidae (fingernail clams) 2.4 3.5 

Corbiculidae (Asiatic clams) 9.8 

Unionidae (mussels) 0.1 

Insecta (insects) 

Odonata (dragonflies) 0.1 

Ephemeroptera (mayflies) 2.3 41.3 

Coleoptera (beetles) 

Trichoptera (caddisflies) 6.6 

Diptera (midges) 0.6 53.8 



Richardson, 1921a: 490-493. Fourteen samples were taken in August 
between river mile 80.0 and 0.0. Averages reported for three reaches 
of the river between mile 0.0 and 80.0 were weighted according to sam- 
ple size and then averaged. 

Colbert et al. , 1975: G15-G20. Six samples were taken in September 
between river mile 81.0 and 2.5. 



24 



found that snails ( Physa sp.), which were reared in the laboratory 
under conditions designed to reduce their exposure to pesticides as 
much as possible, rapidly accumulated dieldrin when exposed in cages to 
Illinois River water at mile 87 for a period of 8 days in August 1974. 
The dieldrin content of the snails increased significantly within 24 
hours, and after 8 days the dieldrin content had increased from 0.1797 
ppm wet weight, whole organism, to 0.8156 ppm. The increase in dieldrin 
content of the snails showed no signs of reaching a plateau within 8 
days, so the ultimate equilibrium concentration of dieldrin in the 
snails was undetermined, but certainly much higher than 0.8 ppm. 

Possible Effects of Barge Traffic on Benthos in the Illinois River. 
Colbert et al. (1975: 95) felt that the increase in benthic populations 
in the main channel of the Mississippi between a high-flow period in July 
of 1974 and an average-flow period in September 1974 indicated that 
barge traffic did not have a dominant influence on benthic organisms. 
Colbert et al. reasoned that the detrimental impacts of barges, if any, 
should be greatest under low-flow conditions. The data of Colbert et 
al. (1975: Table 6) for the benthic organisms in the Illinois River show 
no statistically significant differences in the populations between July 
(a period of high flows) and September (a period of low or average flows), 
except for a significant decline in the number of clams. The Illinois 
is a much smaller river than the Mississippi (the channel is shallower 
and narrower) , and it is possible that barge traffic has a greater im- 
pact on benthic populations in the Illinois during low flows than in 
the Mississippi. 

It is noteworthy that the turbidity and settleable solids were 
greater in the Mississippi than in the Illinois during high flows, but 
that both factors declined to a greater extent in the Mississippi than 
in the Illinois during low flows. The turbidity and settleable solids 
reflect the amount of suspended sediment in the river, and it may be that 
boat traffic more easily resuspends sediment in the Illinois during low 
flows than in the Mississippi. The disturbance of the bottom, or the 
resuspended sediment itself, may have detrimental effects on benthic 



25 



organisms. In addition, we do not know to what extent the resuspension 
of bottom sediments by barges in the main channel contributes to sedimen- 
tation in backwaters and bottomland lakes. 

Biological, chemical, and sediment studies of Meredcsia Lake were 
conducted in 1975 by the Illinois State Water Survey , the Illinois Natural 
History Survey, and the Illinois Geological Survey for the Illinois Depart- 
ment of Conservation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which main- 
tains a refuge at the lake. The sediment studies showed that Meredosia 
Lake is filling with sediment from the lower end, where the lake first 
becomes connected with the Illinois River when water levels rise from the 
normal pool elevation. The Illinois River essentially backs upstream 
into the lake when the water levels are at intermediate stages. When 
the river is at flood stage or above, the water flows across the low 
natural levees at the upper end of the lake, down through the lake, and 
cut the downstream end. Butts (unpublished report, 1975: 7-8) found that 

the oxygen demand exerted by the sediment increased from the upstream end 

2 
of the lake (2.58 grams /m /day, a value typical of an average polluted 

sediment in the main channel of the Illinois Waterway) to the downstream 

2 2 

end (4.32 grams/m /day, which approaches the 5.00 grams/m /day observed in 

the grossly polluted upper Illinois Waterway). When the bottom sediments 

at the downstream end of the lake were disturbed, the oxygen demand was 

86.08 grams/m /day, considerably higher than the demand observed anywhere 

else in the Illinois Waterway. In August 1974, the Natural History Survey 

found that oxygen levels in Meredosia Lake were 3 mg/1, while oxygen 

levels in the river on the same date were 6 mg/1. The readings were 

taken in the middle of the afternoon on an overcast day, and waves 

produced by a strong wind were resuspending bottom sediments in the 

lake. In the lake, a die-off of gizzard shad was occurring, and almost 

all the fingernail clams maintained in plastic cages on the bottom of 

the lake had died since they had last been checked in mid-July. The lake 

is devoid of submerged aquatic vegetation, and lakeshore residents have 

complained to their state legislators and to the Illinois Department of 



26 



Conservation about the very low populations of sport fish in the lake. 
See the section on sedimentation for further discussion of this problem. 



27 



Benthos — Mississippi River 

Historical Perspective. Very little information is available con- 
cerning the status of benthic populations in the study reach of the 
Mississippi River prior to the construction of the navigation dams. 
Many of the early benthos studies that were conducted on other parts 
of the Mississippi prior to dam construction were concerned mainly 
with effects from the increased amounts of pollution entering the 
river. 

At least one early study (Wiebe, 1927) has documented a reduction 
in benthic species diversity and an increase in pollution-tolerant forms. 
Presumably, similar consequences would have resulted from increased 
pollution in the study reach of the river. Another early study demon- 
strated the degradation of bottom fauna in Lake Keokuk (Ellis, 1931a) 
following closure of the dam. 

Pre-Dam and Post-Dam Surveys. The earliest reported survey which 
includes benthos and was conducted near the study reach of the river is 
that of Garman (1890). He surveyed several sloughs, backwater areas, 
and bottomland lakes near Quincy, Illinois (river mile 327). He collec- 
ted and identified 10 species of snails, 2 species of fingernail clams, 
6 species of unionid clams, 6 species of chironomid larvae, and numerous 
other insect larvae. Many of the species Garman identified, including 
the snails Valvata tricarinata and Lioplax subcarinatus and the mayfly 
Hexagenia bilineata , were classified as clean-water species by Richard- 
son in his study of the Illinois River (1928: 408, 409). 

No other pre-dam benthic surveys were conducted in the region of the 

study area. However, in the section of the Mississippi from Minneapolis 

(river mile 850) to Winona, Minnesota (river mile 725) Wiebe documented 

a reduction in clean-water forms due to the influence of pollution from 

the Twin Cities (1927). Clean-water forms such as planaria and mayfly 

nymphs were first taken in this study below the Twin Cities at Red 

Wing, Minnesota (river mile 790). At this station fingernail clams, 

2 
leeches, and tubificid worms numbered more than 1,700/m (Wiebe, 1927: 

146). In conjunction with these findings, Wiebe found more species of 



28 



benthic organisms (about 20) in unpolluted areas than in polluted areas 
(about 6) of the Mississippi River (1927: 166). Wiebe concluded that 
changes in the bottom fauna were primarily due to the lower dissolved 
oxygen content of polluted water (1927: 166). 

Species Composition Changes . The lack of reliable pre-dam data 
concerning benthos in the study area prevents a comparison of pre- and 
post-dam species compositions. 

Effects of the Navigation System on Benthos . Again, lack of 
historical data prohibits an analysis of the effects that construc- 
tion of the navigation dams had on benthos in the study reach. Al- 
though historical data are available for Keokuk Pool, upstream from 
the study area, we do not feel that the effects of the high-head 
power dam at Keokuk are comparable to effects of the relatively low- 
head navigation dams in the study reach. The gates at the Keokuk 
dam are on the top of the dam, and the drop and the force of the water 
coming over the dam present an effective barrier to the movements of 
several species of fish. In addition, sediment accumulates readily 
above the Keokuk dam. In contrast, dams 24, 25, and 26 have gates 
which open from the bottom of the dam, and were purposely designed 
to pass sediment which would otherwise accumulate in the main channel 
immediately above the dam. During high flows in the spring, most of 
the gates are open from the bottom and are out of the water, and most 
fish which make upstream spawning migrations in the spring can probably 
negotiate these dams. 



29 



The operation and maintenance of the nine-foot channel also af- 
fects benthic organisms. Dorris and Copeland (1962: 246, 247) reported 
that winter drawdowns in the section of the Mississippi bordering Iowa, 
Illinois, and Missouri significantly reduced the mean numbers of mayfly 
naiads (Hexagenia rigida ) . Dredging operations destroy the benthos in 
the channel and spoil placement may smother benthic populations. We do 
not know how rapidly different types of benthic organisms can recolonize 
areas which have been dredged or have received dredge spoil. 

A major study of the benthos in Pools 24, 25, and 26 of the Mis- 
sissippi River and the lower 80 miles of the Illinois River was conducted 
by Colbert et al. (1975) in 1974 for the St. Louis District, U.S. Army 
Corps of Engineers. They took a series of benthic samples under high 
flow conditions in July and another series during average flow condi- 
tions in September. They generally sampled the following four habitat 
types at each of thirteen locations in the Mississippi River: main 
channel, side channel, river border area, and area downstream of dikes. 
Definitions of habitat types are given *in Colbert et al. (1975: 16-17). 

Colbert et al. (1975: 94-95) found that side channels and river 
border areas generally afforded the best habitat for benthic organisms, 
while the main channel was the poorest habitat. Total density of 
benthic organisms, species diversity, number of taxa, number of oligo- 
chaetes, oligochaete biomass, and total biomass (exclusive of clams) 
were significantly lower in the main channel. Colbert et al. (1975: 95) 
felt that relatively high current velocity and the coarse, shifting 
substrate in the main channel were the main factors limiting the ben- 
thic organisms. Colbert et al. (1975: 84) also found that the density 
of aquatic insects, and the average number of taxa and diversity of 
all benthic organisms in the Mississippi River were significantly greater 
in September during average flow conditions than in July when the flow 
was high. On the basis of these results, they reasoned that the effects 
of natural environmental conditions (current velocity, shifting substrate) 
in the main channel are more critical than the effects of river traffic, 
since the benthic organisms increased during low flow when effects from 



30 



river traffic would be expected to have the greatest impact. Since no 
one knows what the benthic populations would have been in the absence 
of river traffic, their conclusion should be regarded as tentative. 



It is also possible that changes in the chemistry of the water and 
sediment in the Mississippi River between July and September, 1974 in- 
fluenced the benthic organisms. For example, the dissolved oxygen con- 
centration increased significantly, while the turbidity and settleable 
solids declined significantly. Both trends would favor benthic organisms. 
Benthic organisms live in or on the sediment, so the chemistry of the 
sediment would be expected to influence them. The concentration of cer- 
tain toxicants, such as ammonia, zinc, and cyanide, declined significantly 
between July and September (Colbert et al., 1975: Table 6). More infor- 
mation on the relationship between physical-chemical factors and benthic 
organisms needs to be obtained before one can make a rational choice 
among the above alternative hypotheses. 

Importance of Benthos as Food for Fish and Wildlife. Studies have 
been conducted by Iowa State University and the Illinois Natural His- 
tory Survey on the use of benthic organisms by fish and waterfowl in Pool 
19. The fingernail clam is an important food item in the diets of many 
fishes and diving ducks in Pool 19. Carp, gizzard shad, smallmouth buf- 
falo, white sucker, and black bullhead feed extensively on fingernail 
clams (Jude, 1968: 227, 228, 229). Thompson (1969) estimated a daily con- 
sumption of 229 grams of sphaeriids (blotted with shell intact) per 
diving duck on Pool 19. This rate would have amounted to a sphaeriid 
harvest of over 2 million kg by ducks during both the spring and fall 



31 



of 1967 (Gale, 1969: 149). Populations of fingernail clams in Pool 



19 



v). 



have reached over 100,000/m 2 (Gale, 1969 

While the study reach does not receive the intensive duck use that 
Pool 19 receives, significant populations of diving ducks do appear on 
Pool 26 in winters (December-January) when Pool 19 freezes over (per- 
sonal communication, Frank C. Bellrose, Wildlife Specialist, Illinois 
Natural History Survey, Havana, Illinois, 1978). Colbert et al. 
(1975: 613) found maximum populations of fingernail clams were only 
268/m in Pool 24 but they may not have sampled areas where diving 
ducks are known to congregate and feed. 

Recent Changes in the Benthos. Thompson and Sparks have documented 
a significant decline in the fingernail clam populations of Pool 19 during 
1976 and 1977 (1978). While clam numbers during the fall migrations 
of 1973-1975 reached pool means (all stations) of 34, 000-47, 000/m 2 , the 
1976 figure fell to 16, 000/m 2 and populations continued to be depressed 
through September, 1977 (Thompson and Sparks, 1978). The cause of the 
population decline is unknown but may be related to the low river dis- 
charge of 1976-1977 and a deterioration in water quality (Thompson and 
Sparks, 1978). The fingernail clam populations in the study reach of 
the river may have been similarly affected. 



32 



Commercial Mussel Fishery — Illinois River 

Historical Perspective. Comparison of mussel catch statistics be- 
fore and after construction of the nine-foot channel first necessitates 
a brief historical sketch concerning the changing status of this fishery. 
The pre-dam mussel fishery passed through two phases: a pearl-hunting 
phase and a pearl-button- industry phase. 

By 1890 people were hunting for pearls in Illinois waters and from 
1889 to 1897 the pearl fisheries of the state produced at least $250,000 
($1,771,750 in 1977 dollars) worth of pearls (Kunz, 1897: 395). The 
Illinois River was not, however, a prominent pearl-hunting river of the 
state (Danglade, 1914: 8). 

The first American fresh-water shells for button manufacture were 
probably taken from the Illinois River in 1872 and 1876 (Danglade, 1914: 
7). Around 1910 more than 2,600 boats were being used for mussel fish- 
ing between Peru and Grafton (Danglade, 1914: 8). 

Mussels have been taken from the Illinois River during the post-dam 
period for use in both button manufacture and, more recently, the pearl- 
culture industry. Renewed interest in the commercial harvest of fresh- 
water mussels occurred in Illinois in the early 1960's in response to 
new markets established by the Japanese pearl-culture industry (Lopinot, 
1968: 1; Starrett, 1971: 267). The pearl culturists round off chunks of 
freshwater shell, and insert them into salt-water pearl oysters. Over a 
period of several years, the pearl oyster deposits a thin layer of nacre 
over the nucleus furnished by the freshwater shell. Pearl culture re- 
quires starter material from thick-shelled mussel species only found in 
the Mississippi River, its major tributaries, and a river system in Red 
China (Lopinot, 1967: 15; Starrett, 1971: 267). The pearl-culture in- 
dustry had obtained most of its shells from the Tennessee River system, 
but the decline of this resource led the industry to look elsewhere for 
shells (Starrett, 1971: 267). 

Pearl-culture-related shell production from the Illinois River peaked 
in 1965 when 1,159 tons were harvested (Lopinot, 1968: 10). The supply 
of freshwater shells exceeded the demand by Japanese buyers for a number 
of years, and prices fell. While shells have not provided a worthwhile 

33 



income for Illinois fishermen since 1972, indications along the river 
are that the market may improve soon (Bellrose et al. , 1977: C-117). 

Pre- and Post-Dam Mussel Harvests . A comparison of reported 
mussel catches in pre- and post-dam construction years is difficult 
considering the paucity of available data. Also, harvest information 
by species is not available. Possible effects of the navigation 
system on the mussel catch will be discussed later. 

The earliest reliable commercial mussel harvest information 
for the Illinois River is contained in a statement made by 
Danglade: 



The Illinois /River/ reached its maximum shell production 
during the season of 1909, when thousands of tons of good 
button shells were gathered and put in piles along the shore 
to await shipment. (1914: 8) 



Danglade also found that in 1912 the mussel fishermen in the river from 
Kampsville (river mile 32.0) to Grafton (river mile 1.0) averaged a 
daily yield of 500-700 pounds of shells per man (1914: 23). 

Other pre-construction years for which data are available are 
1922 and 1931 (Table 5) . While these figures compare favorably 
with the "thousands of tons" Danglade mentioned, the 1931 harvest 
represents a 62.5 percent reduction from the 1922 harvest. 

Post-construction mussel catch information to 1963 shows harvests 
which are greatly reduced from 1922 and 1931 figures. However, with 
the advent of the pearl-culture industry, the mussel catch peaked in 
1965 and 1966 to over 1,000 tons (Table 5). These figures are 
similar to pre-construction catches. This increased catch was short- 
lived and catch figures since 1968 are significantly reduced, with 
no reported catch since 1970. The catch was reduced after 1968 
because the market had been glutted and the Japanese had stockpiled 
shell. The stockpiles have been reduced and the Japanese are buying 



34 



Table 5 
Weight and Value of the Mussel Catch from the Illinois River, 1908-1970 





Pounds of 


Dollar Value of 


Value, 


Year 


Mussel Shells 


Mussel Shells 


1977 Dollars 


1908 






139,000 a 


836,085 


1913 






128,692 a 


696,738 


1922 


2 


,759,000 


68,500 


267,561 


1931 


1 


,034,400 


8,341 


44,240 


1956 




30,000 


450 


967 


1958 




6,000 


254 


522 


1963 




900,000 


22,500 


43,495 


1964 




730,000 


18,000 


37,044 


1965 


2 


,318,000 


75,335 


152,026 


1966 


2 


,236,800 


109,461 


213,777 


1967 




776,960 


38,848 


75,715 


1968 




186,000 


8,000 


15,208 


1969 




663,000 


43,000 


78,690 


1970 




54,000 


4,000 


7,060 



value of shells and pearls. 

Sources: 

1908 — Danglade, 1914. 

1913 — Coker, 1921. 

1922, 1931 — U.S. Bureau of Fisheries, Report of the Commissioner 
of Fisheries, Administrative Report. 

1956, 1958 — Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service. 

1965-1968 — Lopinot, 1968. 

1968-1970 — National Marine Fisheries Service, U.S. Department of 
Commerce. 



35 



again, stimulating a recent (since 1975) revival in the mussel industry 
that is not yet reflected in the commercial statistics in Table 5, 
which were only available through 1970. The Tennessee Shell Company, 
thelargest buyer of shells, has not branched out into manufacturing 
novelty table tops with freshwater shells embedded in plastic, so 
perhaps the demand for shells will stabilize. 

Species Composition Changes . An investigation of species records 
for the lower Illinois River since 1912 indicates the loss of several 
species from this stretch of the river (Table 6). The number of species 
recorded for Alton pool has been reduced from a total of 31 since 1912 to 
only 14 in 1966-1969: a loss of 17 species. However, fewer species have 



36 



Table 6 

Kinds of Mussels Taken Alive from the Illinois River in the Vicinity 
of Meredosia in 1912, 1930, 1955, and 1966? 



Kind of Mussel 



F. ebena (Ebony Shell) 

F. _f . f. undata (Pig-Toe) 

M. gigantea (Washboard) 

A. plicata (Three-Ridge) 

C;. quadrula (Maple-Leaf) 

Q. pustulosa (Pimple-Back) 

£. nodulata (Warty-Back) 

_£. metanevra (Monkey-Face) 

JT. verrucosa (Buckhorn) 

_C. tuberculata (Purple Warty-Back) 

P_. cyphyus (Bullhead) 

P_. coccineum f. solida 

E. crassidens (Elephant's Ear) 

E. dilatatus (Lady-Finger) 

A. confragosus (Rock Pocketbook) 

L. complanata (White Heel-Splitter) 

A. grandis complex (Floater) 

A. imbecillis (Paper Pond Shell) 

0_. reflexa (Three-Horned Warty-Back) 

A. ligamentina (Mucket) 

P. lineolata (Butterfly) 

T. truncata (Deer-Toe) 

T_. donaciformis (Fawn's Foot) 

L. fragilis (Fragile Paper Shell) 

P. alata (Pink Heel-Splitter) 

P. laevissima (Fragile Heel-Splitter) 

£. parva (Liliput Shell) 

L. recta (Black Sand-Shell) 

L. a., f. anodontoides (Yellow Sand-Shell) 

L. a., f. fallaciosa (Slough Sand-Shell) 

L. _r. luteola (Fat Mucket) 

L_. ventricosa (Pocketbook) 

L. _o. f. higginsii (Higgin's Eye) 



Total 



31 



19 



16 





Mussels 


Taken 




1912 b 1930 t 


1955 C 


1966 d 


P e 


P 






P 






P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 








? 


P 


P 




P 








P 








P 








P 








P 








P 


P 


P 


P 


P 








P 


P 
P 


P 


P 


p 


P 


P 


P 


? 








P 








P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P 




P 


P 


P 


P 


P 




P 


P 


P 


P 
P 


P 


P 


P 








P 


P 






P 


p 


P 


P 


P 


P 


P . 




P 








P 









14 



aTable taken from Starrett, 1971: 357. 

^Collections by Danglade (1914: 37) at the old LaGrange lock and dam and 

at Meredosia. 

Collections made 2 miles above Meredosia in 1955 by Dr. Paul W. Parmalee 

(personal communication, 4 January 1968) . 

^1966 survey in the vicinity of Meredosia (river miles 70.8-79.8) (Starrett, 1971). 

ep = present, blank = absent. 

f Collections made in the early 1930 's in the vicinity of Meredosia by Dr. 

J.P.E. Morrison (personal communication, 4 January 1968). 



37 



been eliminated from this pool than from other parts of the river (Star- 
rett, 1971: 356). 

A comparison of species records for pre-dam (1930) and post-dam (1955) 
years indicates the loss of 3 species from the river in the vicinity of 
Meredosia (Table 6 ). Specifically, the yellow sand-shell (_L. anodontoides ) 
liliput shell (C . parva ) , and the paper pond-shell (A. imbecillis ) were 
present in 1930 but absent in 1955. Paper pond-shells were, however, 
collected below Meredosia (Naples — river mile 65.5) in 1966 (Starrett, 
1971: 356). 

While the liliput shell and paper pond-shell are not of commercial 
value, the yellow sand-shell was an important commercial species. 
Danglade (1914: 45) in discussing the yellow sand-shell in the Illinois 
River (1912) stated: 



This species is found sparingly throughout the upper river, 
but is fairly abundant in the Hardin district, where it 
is in sufficient quantity to be sorted out and sold separately 
at an advanced price. This shell is the most valuable of '. 
the freshwater mussels . . . 



The yellow sand-shell may still occur in Alton Pool as a rare species 
(Starrett, 1971: 357). 

While the fat mucket (L. luteola ) and fawn's foot (T. donaciformis ) 
were found near Meredosia in 1955, they were not found there in 1966 
(Table 6 ) . A single specimen of the fat mucket was found in a commer- 
cial shell pile at Meredosia in 1966 and Starrett believed this species 
would soon be eliminated from the river (Starrett, 1971: 336). While 
the fawn's foot was not collected from Alton Pool by Starrett in 1966, 
it probably occurred there in small numbers (Starrett, 1971: 327). 

As late as 1966 only the Alton Pool of the Illinois River supported 
relatively large populations of pimple-backs (Q. pustulosa ) and wash- 
boards (M. gigantea ) and moderate populations of warty-backs (Q. nodulata ) 
and three-horned warty-backs (Q. reflexa ) (Starrett, 1971: 356). The 
predominant species taken by mussel fishermen from the Illinois River in 
the 1960 's were the three-ridge (A. plicata ) and washboard (M. gigantea ) 
(Lopinot, 1968: 8). 



38 



Economic Factors Affecting the Commercial Mussel Fishery. Market 
changes have had a dramatic effect on the mussel industry of the Illinois 
River . 

As mentioned previously, the early mussel fishery on the Illinois 
River was concerned primarily with pearl hunting. While it is not 
known what percentage of the early market is attributable to pearl 
products alone, Danglade (1914: 36) had estimated that average pearl 
slug yield for the river was one-half ounce per ton of shells, with 
the percentage of pearls per ton being much smaller. Occasionally, pearls 
of great value were found in the lower Illinois River with one at 
Pearl (river mile 41.8) worth $2,700 ($15,512 in 1977 dollars) and 
one found at Hardin (river mile 21.4) worth $750 ($4,309 in 1977 dollars) 
(Danglade, 1914: 36). The washboard (M. gigantea ) was the principal 
pearl-bearing shell in the Illinois River and this mussel is still 
present in Alton Pool (Table 6 ) . 

Although shipments of shells for button manufacture were sent from 
Eeardstown as early as 1876 (Danglade, 1914: 7), the shell-button in- 
dustry did not develop extensively on the river until the early 1900' s. 
In 1970 a button or blank factory was established on the river at 
Beardstown and the next year another plant was located at Meredosia 
(Danglade, 1914: 8). The average price of shells from the lower Il- 
linois River was $25 per ton ($140 in 1977 dolalrs) in 1909. By 1912 
there were 9 button factories on the lower river: 2 at Meredosia, 1 
at Naples, 5 at Pearl, and 1 at Grafton (Danglade, 1914: 8). In the 
same year the average price paid for shells had dropped to $12-13 
($70-75 in 1977 dollars) per ton with high-quality shells such as 
ebony shells (F. ebena ) and sand-shells (_L. recta , _L. fallaciosa , _L. 
anodontoides ) commanding $50-60 ($287-345 in 1977 dollars) per ton 
(Danglade, 1914: 12). 

The "boom" in shell collection did not last and by 1911 over- 
harvesting, siltation, land reclamation, and pollution were affecting 
mussel populations (Forbes and Richardson, 1913; Danglade, 1914: 47, 48). 
From 1909 to 1912 the number of boats engaged in mussel fishing on 
the entire river fell from approximately 2,600 to 400 (Danglade, 1914: 8). 



39 



In this same period, the number of commercial mussel fishermen working 
between Meredosia and Naples fell from 200 to 25-35 (Danglade, 1914- 21) 
The total value of shells and pearls taken from the river dropped from 
$139,000 ($836,085 in 1977 dollars) in 1908 to $128,692 ($696,738 in 
1977 dollars) in 1913 (Table 5 ). 

Although the data are incomplete for the years following 1913 
the values of the 1922 mussel catch and the 1931 catch were greatly 
reduced from previous years (Table 5 ). After World War II plastic 
generally replaced shell material in the manufacture of buttons. The 
mussel catch data for 1956 and 1958 follow the trend of previous 
years, showing greatly reduced harvests and values (Table 5). 

From 1961 to 1966 the number of mussel-fishing licenses sold in 
Illinois rose from 69 to 1,279 (Lopinot, 1968: 6). A rise in mussel production 
paralleled the rise in license sales and the harvest from the Illinois 
River topped 1,000 tons in 1965 and 1966 (Table 5). The Wabash and 
Mississippi Rivers were the other main mussel-producing waters of the 
state during this period, with shells from the Wabash being of the best 
grade and commanding significantly higher prices (Lopinot, 1968- 10- 
Starrett, 1971: 268). During the revival of this fishery most of the 
shell beds fished commercially were located in Alton Pool (Starrett, 1971- 390) 
These beds possessed substantial standing crops of mussels (Starrett, 1971- 390) 

By 1970 shell production had dropped to only 54,000 pounds from 
the entire river (Table 5 ). While a reduction in the kinds of mussels 
in the pool has taken place, this reduction did not affect the commer- 
cial catch significantly as the remaining species are the types favored 
by the pearl-culture industry. Although mussel fishing has not been 
economically worthwhile since 1972, the market has begun to improve 
recently, as mentioned previously. 

Effects of the Navi gation S ys tem on the Ifaggej f^ Specific ef- 
fects of the navigation system on mussels are difficult to pinpoint as 
the river has been subjected to varying degrees of other potentially 
detrimental influences. According to Starrett, conditions for mussels 
in the Pool have generally worsened since 1930: 



,0 



. . . the mussel fauna of the Alton pool was affected 
adversely by pollution between 1912 and 1930 but . . . con- 
ditions for mussels probably have worsened since 1930 . . . 
(1971: 356) 



Mussel populations in the lower Illinois River were being adversely 
affected prior to the completion of the navigation system. From 1912 
to 1930 the number of species recorded from collections in the river 
near Meredosia fell from 31 to 19 (Table 6 ) . 

One early detrimental influence was the increased flow of sewage 
and industrial effluent from Chicago and Peoria as mentioned in the 
Water Quality Section. Although Alton Pool is the farthest removed 
from this influence, Starrett felt that upstream domestic and in- 
dustrial pollution were the prime limiting factors for the mussels of 
this pool (1971: 356). 

Overharvesting in the initial years of the pearl-culture industry 
also played a role. Danglade reported that as early as 1912 mussel 
fishermen near Meredosia complained that the "river is playing out," 
and in 1914 the area from Peoria south to Kampsville was depleted in out- 
put of mussels (1914: 17, 21). 

Danglade (1914: 47) also felt that land reclamation was affecting 
the mussel resource: 



The levees which have been heretofore and are now being 
constructed, particularly in the lower stretches of the river, 
reduce to a large extent the breeding grounds of the valuable 
species of fishes and incidentally affect the future supply 
of the mussels /reduction of fish hosts/. 



Between 1899 and 1914 in Illinois the bottomland areas protected by 
levees increased from 6,700 acres to 124,205 acres (Forbes and Richard- 
son, 1919: 146). This trend continued and from 1920 to 1931 the levee 
acreage increased from 771,312 acres to 994,327 acres (Stewart, 1931: 37). 

The current velocity of the Illinois River has been reduced, and 
Starrett attributes this reduction to the navigation dams and reduced 
diversion of Lake Michigan water from previous levels (Starrett, 1971: 272), 

41 



Diversion of water from Lake Michigan down the Illinois River 
was sharply curtailed in December 1938 (Chicago District, Corps 
of Engineers, 1975: 7), within the period the navigation dams 
were put into operation. We know of no way to separate the 
effects of reduced diversion from effects of impoundment on 
current velocity in the Illinois River. 



42 



Forbes and Richardson found the usual rate of flow at normal stages to 
be l%-2% miles per hour (1920: xli) . Starrett found the current speed 
in 1966 to be about 0.6 mph at normal stages. This reduction in cur- 
rent velocity compounded the siltation problem that already existed in 
the river (Starrett, 1971: 272; Bellrose et al. , 1977: C-12). The reduced 
current velocity resulting from the dams and reduced Lake Michigan diversion 
may also be preventing the reestablishment of several mussel species: 



The navigation dams possibly have reduced the flow of the 
current enough to make the environment in the river unsuit- 
able for the reestablishment of several current-inhabiting 
species of mussels present before 1900. (Starrett, 1971: 346) 



Experiments by Ellis showed that most of the common fresh-water 
mussels were unable to maintain themselves in sand or gravel bottoms 
when a layer of silt from h," to 1" deep was allowed to accumulate on 
the bottom (1936: 39, 40). He found the yellow sand-shell to be one 
of the least resistant mussels he tested and while this mussel was not 
found alive in Alton Pool by Starrett in 1966 (1971: 356), it was col- 
lected in the Pool at Meredosia in pre-dam surveys (Table 6 ) . Ellis 
also found that silt may reduce survival of young clams by destroying 
mucus threads used by the animal for anchoring (1931: 6, 7). 

Starrett felt that sedimentation was of major importance in ex- 
plaining the decline of the mussel fauna in the river: 



The increase in the sluggishness of the river, as men- 
tioned above and the increased planting of row crops on the 
watershed have, in the author's opinion, made siltation in 
the past 30 years /mid-1930 's to mid-1960's/ an important 
factor adversely affecting the survival of mussels and 
other organisms in the Illinois River and its bottomland 
lakes . . . (1971: 272) 



The resuspension of bottom materials by barge traffic adds to 
the turbidity of river water. Starrett in 1964 found that in Alton Pool 
(river mile 65.1) the passage of two towboats increased the turbidity 
from 108 to 320 Jackson Turbidimeter Units (1971: 273). Increased 



43 



turbidity and silt-laden water interfere with the feeding of mussels 
and in silty water mussels may remain closed 75-90 percent of the 
time (Ellis, 1936: 40). 

The passing of barges can produce water level drawdowns which 
expose bottom-dwelling organisms such as insects, snails, and clams 
(Thomas and Sparks, unpublished). Following a protracted period of 
unusually high water levels in 1972 and 1973, an Illinois Natural His- 
tory Survey crew examined a bed in the fall of 1974 at river mile 
106.5 (upstream from the project area), where mussels were being 
regularly exposed as towboats passed, and where some mussels had 
recently died (Sparks, 1975a: 3). 

Clams will close their shells and snails will withdraw into their 
shells when exposed this way, thus disrupting their normal activities 
such as feeding and respiration. If the animals do not open regularly 
to feed and respire, they will eventually die. Growth and reproduction 
are probably slowed by levels of disturbance that do not result in 
death. Some species of mollusks respond to gradually falling water 
levels by burrowing into the mud or retreating to deeper water. Based 
on our observations at mile 106.6, it seems that some mussels do not 
exhibit this adaptive response to repeated short-term exposures. 

In conclusion, the mussel fishery in the study area of the Illinois 
River declined due to pollution and overharvesting prior to the com- 
pletion of the nine-foot navigation system. The dams associated with 
the nine-foot channel and the reduction of diversion from Lake Michigan 
probably also affected the mussel fauna by reducing the current velocity 
and increasing sedimentation in some areas. Dredging and spoiling opera- 
tions to maintain the navigation channel can destroy mussel beds. The 
increase in boat traffic which resulted from construction of the nine-foot 
channel has probably affected mussels. Barges resuspend bottom sediments, 
temporarily draw water away from shallow areas as they. pass, and produce 
wave wash along the shores. Large pleasure boats also cause pronounced 
wave wash along the shore. All these disturbances can adversely affect 
mussels. 



44 



Commercial Mussel Fishery — Mississippi River 

Historical Perspective . The history of the commercial mussel indus- 
try on the Mississippi River is similar to that of the industry on the 
Illinois River. On both rivers this industry was unstable. A number of 
factors, most notably overharvesting, resulted in a dramatic decline of 
this fishery shortly after its inception. As on the Illinois River, the 
establishment of new markets in the early 1960 's led to a revival in mus- 
sel fishing. A map in Lopinot (1968: 7) shows that the Mississippi River 
above the confluence with the Missouri was fished commercially for mussels 
in the 1960's, so the 1960 's revival in the commercial mussel fishery 
included portions of the study area. 

Mussel fishing on the Mississippi River began about 1889 near Musca- 
tine, Iowa. The fishery grew rapidly and by 1897 more than 300 people 
were engaged in mussel fishing on the Mississippi River between Burlington 
and Clinton, Iowa (Carlander, 1954: 40). By 1900 mussel fishing on the 
river had extended as far south as Grafton, Illinois (Townsend, 1902: 678). 

Surveys on the river after 1899 indicated that mussel beds were de- 
clining (Carlander, 1954: 45). In response to the depleted condition of 
the resource, the Fairport Biological Station was established at Fairport, 
Iowa, in 1908 by the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries. The Fairport Station con- 
ducted research on mussel propagation but mussel harvests continued to 
decline. The degradation of mussel beds was generally attributed to over- 
harvesting and increasing pollution (Carlander, 1954: 40, 41, 48). By 
1946 there was very little mussel fishing in the Mississippi River below 
Muscatine and most of the shells worked by the button plants in Iowa during 
the 1950' s were shipped in from Tennessee and Arkansas (Carlander, 1954: 51) 

As on the Illinois River, the pearl-culture industry markets that 
were established in the early 1960's led to an increase in commercial 
mussel fishing activity on the Mississippi River. However, the rise in 
mussel harvests on the Mississippi did not reach the level attained on 
the Illinois and Wabash Rivers during this period (Lopinot, 1968: 10). 

Pre- and Post-Dam Mussel Harvests . Early mussel-harvest informa- 
tion for the Mississippi River is sketchy but it is obvious that this 
industry underwent phenomenal growth in the 1890' s. Although little 



45 



harvest information for individual species is available, the total 
mussel harvest for the river increased from 148,000 pounds in 1894 to 
more than 16 million pounds in 1899 (Table 7). In 1901 a shipment of 
approximately 1.5 million pounds of shells, comprised mostly of ebony 
shells and "sand shells", left Hannibal, Missouri (Townsend, 1902: 707). 

The only other pre-dam year for which data are available is 1922. 
Although the catch for the entire river was greatly increased over 
previous data, the catch from the river by Illinois fishermen was sig- 
nificantly reduced from their 1899 share of the catch (Table 7 ) . As 
the depletion of the initial mussel fishing areas around Muscatine in- 
creased, this fishery spread into Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Missouri 
(Cohen, 1921: 39) and the increased catch by fishermen from other 
states accounts for Illinois fishermen taking a reduced proportion of 
the Mississippi River catch. 

Mussel harvests in post-construction years were greatly reduced 
from earlier figures (Table 7 ) . While post-construction data are 
only available since 1955, it appears that the commercial mussel in- 
dustry faltered earlier: 



... by the 1930 's the mussel industry on the Mississippi 
River was dead. . . . The finishing touch came when plastic 
buttons were introduced onto the market. (Nord, 1967: 192) 



As on the Illinois River, the Japanese pearl-culture markets of 
the 1960 's stimulated increased mussel fishing on the Mississippi 
River. Peak production during this period lasted only a year or two 
with Illinois fishermen taking over 2,000,000 pounds from the Mis- 
sissippi in 1966 (Table 7). Interestingly, this figure is comparable 
to the harvest taken from the Illinois River in the same year (Table 5 ) . 
These new markets also stimulated musseling activity on the Mississippi 
River by Missouri fishermen. Harvests by Missouri fishermen from the 
Mississippi River peaked in 1965 and 1966 at over 100,000 pounds (Table 7 ), 
This increased harvest from the river was short-lived and harvest 
figures since 1967 are significantly reduced from those of the earlier 



46 



Table 7 
Weight and Value of the Mussel Catch, Mississippi River and 







Associ 


ated Waters, 


, 1894-1972 








State 


of Illinois 


Illinois Catch from M: 
Pounds Value, $ 


ississippi R. 


Year 


Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977 $ 


1977 $ 


1894 


47,500 


665 


5,248 








1899 


8,910,000 


43,468 


314,926 


8,910,000 


43,468 


314,926 


1908 














1922 


9,265,000 


264,395 


1,032,727 


468,000 


11,436 


44,669 


1955 


18,000 


90 


200 








1956 


44,000 


770 


1,655 








1957 


9,000 


1,000 


2,089 








1958 


22,000 


1,000 


2,060 








1959 


100,000 


2,000 


4,112 








1960 


400,000 


14,000 


28,756 








1961 


100,000 


3,000 


6,186 








1962 


400,000 


16,000 


32,896 








1963 


1,812,000 


73,000 


150,526 








1964 


1,358,000 


59,000 


121,422 








1965 


1,750,000 


85,000 


171,530 


362,000 


75,335 


152,026 


1966 


4,165,000 


271,000 


529,263 


2,489,000 


130,806 


255,464 


1967 


1,560,000 


130,000 


253,370 


148,000 


66,870 


- 130,330 


1968 


328,000 


23,000 


43,723 








1969 


1,340,000 


81,000 


148,230 


545,500 


30,003 


54,905 


1970 


125,000 


11,000 


19,415 








1972 


8,000 


<1,000 


<1,638 









Sources: 

1894 — Smith, 1898 

1899 — Townsend, 1902; Car lander, 1954 

1922 — Sette, 1925 

1955-1965 — Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
1965-1968 — Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, 



1965-1968 — Lopinot, 1968 

(Illinois) 
1969-1972 — National Marine 

Fisheries Service, 

U.S. Department of 

Commerce 



National Marine Fisheries (Missouri, Mississippi River 



47 



Sheet 1 of 2 



Table 7 (concluded) 



Mi, 


ssouri Catch from Mi 


ssissipp: 


L R. Miss 


issippi River 

Value, $ 
2,072 




Year 


Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977 $ 


Pounds 


1977 $ 


1894 


148,000 


16,350 


1899 








>16,000,000 


66,110 


478,967 


1908 










686,000 4 


,126,290 


1922 








51,768,173 


1,050,600 4 


,103,643 


1955 








1,106,000 


27,000 


59,940 


1956 








500,000 


20,000 


42,980 


1957 








740,000 


15,000 


31,335 


1958 








124,000 


3,000 


6,180 


1959 








66,000 


2,000 


4,112 


1960 








386,000 


6,000 


12,324 


1961 














1962 








2,000 


<1,000 


<2,056 


1963 








46,000 


1,000 


2,062 


1964 








174,000 


5,000 


10,290 


1965 


108,000 


4,000 


8,072 


1,326,000 


39,000 


80,262 


1966 


106,000 


5,000 


9,765 


3,925,000 


185,000 


361,305 


1967 


50,000 


2,000 


3,898 


263,000 


12,000 


23,338 


1968 


1,000 


<1,000 


<1,901 


1,000 


<1,000 • 


<1,901 


1969 








1,388,000 


76,000 


139,080 


1970 








309,000 


21,000 


37,065 


1972 















Sheet 2 of 2 



peak years. Collections in 1975 and 1976 indicate that mussels a^-e 
not abundant in Pools 24, 25, and 26 (Perry, in press: 6). 

Species Composition Cha^ a. species composition of ^ 
mussel fauna of the Mississippi River has changed little from the pre- 
dam era (Table 8 ) , but the relative abundance of certain species has 
been reduced. tt,«~ 

„. u Th6re are few data °n the species changes 

that have occurred in Pools 24, 25, and 26 of the river. 

Evidently, the ebony ghell mnssel (Fusconala ebena) 

was once very abundant in Pools 24, 25, and 26 as well a71h7e^ir7~ 
river (Townsend, 1902: 707; Cohen, 1921: 22; Nord, 1967: 191) A 
shell sample from the Mississippi River at Grafton, Illinois, in 1912 
consisted of 32 percent ebony shells (Danglade, 1914: 25) mis 
mussel was an important commercial species, taken for the pearl button 
industry (Smith, 1899; Townsend, 1902: 707; Coker, 1921: 41; Nord 1967- 
193). The known fish host for this mussel is the skipjack herring 
(Alosa chrysochlori s), a fish that is supposedly migratory (Coker et 
al., 1921: 153; Starrett, 1971: 289). It appears that the construc- 
tl0n ° f dams on the Mississippi River inhibited the 

movements of this fish (Coker, 1914: 23, 26; Barnickol and Starrett 
1951: 323) and in doing so reduced the survival of the ebony shell mussel. 
By 1926 the skipjack was no longer found above Keokuk Dam (Carlander 
1954: 48) and Barnickol and Starrett (1951: 323) report that skipjack 
herring were only taken occasionally in their collections from the 
river between Caruthersville, Missouri, and Warsaw, Illinois, in 1944. 
Nord summarizes: 

The importance of the three-ridge in today's fishe-y 

claT™ W ti0D °J J" 6 Ch3ngeS that have occurred In'the 
clam Population of the Mississippi River over the years. 

SduJtrTw II s th£ eb ° ny She11 W3S the backb °ne of the 

t^fisIerT (1967: P 19 C 3) S "" "** ^ ^'^ f ™ 

The UMRCC survey (Perry, in press: 8) classified the ebony shell as 
uncommon in the river. 



49 



Table 8 

Mussel Species Reported from Mississippi River 
in 1906, 1931, and 1975-76 



Species' 



Cumberlandia monodonta 
Fusconaia ebena 



Fusconaia f lava f . undata 

Megalonaias gigantea 

Amblema plicata x 

Quadrula quadrula x 

Quadrula pustulosa x 

Quadrula nodulata x 

Quadrula metanevra x 

Tritogonia verrucosa x 

Cyclonaias tuberculata x 

Plethobasus cyphyus x 

Pleurobema cordatum x 

Elliptio crassidens x 

Elliptio dilatatus x 

Arcidens confragosus x 

Lasmigona costata x 

Lasmigona complanata x 

Anodonta grandis Complex x 

Anodonta imbecillis x 

Anodonta suborbiculata x 

Alasmidonta marginata x 

Nomenclature follows Starrett, 1971. 

b Baker, 1906, 

cEllis, 1931a. 

d Perry, in press. 

e x=collected in Mississippi River. 

f *=collected in Pools 24, 25, and 26. 



50 



1906 b 


1931° 


1975-76 d 


e 

X 


X 




X 


* f 


* 


X 


* 


* 


X 


* 


* 



Sheet 1 of 



Table 8 (concluded) 



Species 



Strophitus undulatus 

Simpsoniconcha aiabigua 

Obliquar-?a reflexa 

Qbovaria olivaria 

Actinonaias ligamentina 

Actlnonaias ellipsif ormis 

Plagiola lineolata 

Truncilla truncata 

Truncilla donaciformis 

Leptodea fragilis 

Leptodea leptodon 

Proptera alata 

Proptera cap ax 

Proptera laevlssima 

Carunculina parva 

Ligumla recta 

Ligumia subrostrata 

Lampsilis anodontoides f . anodontoides 

Lampsilis anodontoides f . fallaciosa 

Lampsilis radiata luteola 

Lampsilis ventricosa 

Lampsilis orbiculata f . orbiculata 

Lampsilis orbiculata f . higginsii 



1906 
x 



1931 



1975-76 



Number of species collected in Mississippi River 
in 1906, but not in 1975-76 

Number of species collected in Mississippi River 
in 1931, but not in 1975-76 



Number of species collected in Pools 24, 
in 1931, but not in 1975-76 



25. and 26 



Sheet 2 of 2 



51 



Another commercial species which seems to have been adversely 
affected by dams is the yellow sand-shell (Lampsilis anodontoides a } 
Smith (1899) listed this mussel as the second most important commercial 
species and "sand shells" were being taken from the river in significant 
quantities in the early 1900's (Townsend, 1902: 707). While Coker found 
good-sized beds of yellow sand-shells in Keokuk "Lake" in 1926, Ellis 
surveyed the same sites in 1931 and found no live yellow sand-shells 
and that the beds were covered with silt and "foul-smelling mud" (1931: 
8). Ellis, as previously noted, found that the yellow sand-shell was 
readily killed by silt deposition (1936: 40). The known host fish for 
the yellow sand-shell is the long-nosed gar (Lepisosteus osgeus) (Coker 
et al., 1921: 152; Baker, 1928, as seen in Parmalee, 1967: 101). 
Populations of this fish in the study reach of the river appear to be 
stable (see the section on the commercial fishery) . 

Economic Factors. In contrast with the mussel industry on the 
Illinois River, pearl-hunting never assumed financial importance on 
the Mississippi River (Nord, 1967: 191) and little is on record con- 
cerning this aspect of the industry. The value of the 1899 Illinois 
fishermen's catch from the Mississippi River of $43,468 ($314,926 in 
1977 dollars) includes $1,425 ($10,324 in 1977 dollars) worth'of 
pearls (Townsend, 1902: 683). In 1922 pearls and slugs accounted for 
$1,370 ($5,351 in 1977 dollars) of the $11,436 ($44,669 in 1977 dollars) 
value of the Illinois mussel catch from the Mississippi River (Sette 
1925: 226). 

By 1899 there were 322 Illinois mussel fishermen working the Missis- 
sippi using $2,144 ($15,533 in 1977 dollars) worth of crowfoot lines, 
rakes, and other mussel fishing equipment (Townsend, 1902: 679, 680). 
This work force of 322 accounts for approximately 13 percent of the 2,389 
people employed statewide in fishing that year and for 28 percent of the 
Illinois fishermen working the Mississippi River (Townsend, 1902: 678). 
In addition, the button-blank factories of Illinois employed 293 people 
in 1899 (Townsend, 1902: 678). Prices paid for shells in 1899 ranged 
from $8-10 ($58-72 in 1977 dollars) per ton. It is obvious that mussel 
fishing on the Mississippi River during this period was economically viable. 

52 



By 1922 the Illinois portion of the Mississippi River mussel fishery- 
had been reduced, due to the northern and southern expansion of this 
industry into other states, as mentioned previously. In that year there 
were only 387 people from Illinois employed in all types of fishing on 
the Mississippi River (Sette, 1925: 193) compared to the 322 Illinois 
mussel fishermen on the Mississippi in 1899. The reported equipment 
used by Illinois mussel fishermen on the river in 1922 amounted to only 
82 crowfoot bars valued at $395 ($1,543 in 1977 dollars) (Sette, 1925: 
222). These figures coincide with the reduced Illinois proportion of 
the Mississippi River mussel catch in that year (Table 7 ) . Examination 
of catch weight and values for 1922 show that prices paid for shells 
ranged from $40-60 per ton ($156-234 in 1977 dollars), so the demand 
for shells had raised prices above the 1899 levels but the supply of 
suitable mussels had evidently fallen due to over-harvest. 

The shell processing and button-cutting aspect of the industry also 
lends insight to the economic importance of the industry. In 1898 
there were at least 21 towns in Iowa and Illinois with button factories 
(Smith, 1899: 303). By 1922 there were 16 separate plants in Illinois 
employing 455 people (Sette, 1925: 193). In that year these plants 
produced over 2 million button blanks worth $454,613 ($1,775,718 in 
1977 dollars) (Sette, 1925: 193). The by-products from these plants, 
which included poultry grit and stucco, were valued at $3,794 
($14,819 in 1977 dollars) (Sette, 1925: 193). 

While the production of buttons from factories in Illinois, Iowa, 
and Missouri had remained stable from 1939 through 1948, most of the 
shells used in production during this time were imported from Tennessee 
and Arkansas (Carlander, 1954: 51). By the mid-1960's the last pearl- 
button factory at Muscatine closed as the industry could no longer 
compete with the low cost of plastic buttons (Parmalee, 1967: 4). 

Recent Trends. The renewed interest in mussel fishing which re- 
sulted from the pearl-culture industry markets of the 1960 ' s not only 
resulted in an increase in the number of mussel fishermen and in the 
catch (Table 7; Lopinot, 1968: 6), but also changed the species of 



53 



This page was revised 3 January 1980 and pagination was altered by one 
number. — R.E.S. et al. 



mussels fishermen sought. The pearl-culture fishery required thick- 
shelled mussels of the genera Amblema , Ouadrula , Fleurobema , and Mega- 
lonaias (Cahn, 1949: 49, in Starrett, 1971: 267). The interest in 
these mussel species is fortunate as some of those valued as pearl- 
button stock, such as the ebony shell and yellow sand-shell, probably 
were not available in quantities to sustain the increased harvests 
brought by the pearl-culture industry. The Illinois catch from the 
Mississippi River during 1965-1967 was comprised mostly of washboards 
( Megalonaias g.) (75-80%) and three-ridges ( Amblema p.) (15-20%) (Lopinot, 
1968: 8). 

The pearl-culture-related harvest did not last and during 1967 
shell production dropped drastically (Table 7). This reduction was 
the result of the Japanese requiring larger shells and possible over- 
harvesting in 1966 (Lopinot, 1968: 19). During this period the market 
price paid for shells was $40-60 per ton ($78-117 in 1977 dollars) 
(Nord, 1967: 187; Lopinot, 1967: 12). 

Effects of the Navigation System on the Mussel Fauna . The possible 
effects that the navigation system has had on the mussel fauna of the 
study reach are probably very similar to those outlined for the Illinois 
River (see Illinois section) . The potentially adverse effects that the 
navigation system could have on the mussel fauna of the Mississippi 
River were recognized early when the Fisheries Service stated in their 
March, 1930 bulletin that the proposed nine-foot channel would be 
detrimental to clams (Carlander, 1954: 48). 

Nord (1967) stated that the Mississippi River dams have slowed 
the current and facilitated deposition of sediment: 



The navigation dams have slowed down the current and silt 
deposits have smothered many formerly productive beds 
(of mussels). (Nord, 1967: 194) 



53 



mussels fishermen sought. The pearl-culture fishery required thick- 
shelled mussels of the genera Amblema , Ouadrula , Pleurobema , and Mega - 
lonaias (Cahn, 1949: 49, in Starrett, 1971: 267). The interest in 
these mussel species is fortunate as some of those valued as pearl- 
button stock, such as the ebony shell and yellow sand-shell, probably 
were not available in quantities to sustain the increased harvests 
brought by the pearl-culture industry. The Illinois catch from the 
Mississippi River during 1965-1967 was comprised mostly of washboards 
( Megalonaias g.) (75-80%) and three-ridges (Amblema p.) (15-20%) (Lopinot, 
1968: 8). 

The pearl-culture-related harvest did not last and during 1967 
shell production dropped drastically (Table 7 ) . This reduction was the 
result of the Japanese requiring larger shells and possible overharvesting 
in 1966 (Lopinot, 1968: 19). During this period the market price paid 
for shells was $40-60 per ton ($78-117 in 1977 dollars) (Nord, 1967: 
187; Lopinot, 1967: 12). 

Effects of the Navigation System on the Mussel Fauna. The possible 
effects that the navigation system has had on the mussel fauna of the 
study reach are probably very similar to those outlined for the Illinois 
River (see Illinois section) . The potentially adverse effects that the 
navigation system could have on the mussel fauna of the Mississippi 
River were recognized early when the Fisheries Service stated in their 
March, 1930 bulletin that the proposed nine-foot channel would be detri- 
mental to clams (Carlander, 1954: 48). 

Several biologists have stated that the Mississippi River dams 
have slowed the current and facilitated deposition of sediment: 

The navigation dams have slowed down the current and 
silt deposits have smothered many formerly productive beds 
(of mussels). (Nord, 1967: 194) 



54 



The dams have also restricted the movements of at least one fish, 
the skipjack herring ( Alosa chrysochloris ) , which serves as host for 
the formerly important ebony shell mussel. According to Barnickol 
and Starrett: 



The scarcity of the skipjack in the collections of the 
1944 survey tends to indicate that this fish may have been 
affected by the locks and dams constructed below Keokuk 
. . . (1951: 323) 



The restriction of this fish, which is uncommon in the study reach, has 
adversely affected the ebony shell population. It is possible that 
restrictions of the movements of other species of fish which serve as 
mussel hosts have reduced mussel populations (Coker, 1914: 8; Ellis, 
1931: 6; Parmalee, 1967: 13). 

Dredging, deposition of spoil, and barge traffic might have detri- 
mental effects like those already described for the Illinois River. Be- 
cause the Illinois is narrower, shallower, and has a predominantly 
mud, rather than sand bottom, the effects of boat traffic may be more 
pronounced in the Illinois than in the Mississippi. 



55 



Commercial Fishery — Illinois River 

Historical Perspective . In 1899, 600 rail carloads of fish were 
shipped from the Illinois River to New York City (Bartlett, 1900). Each 
car held from 8,000 to 20,000 pounds of fish. Twenty- two railcars were 
shipped from Beardstown alone (Townsend, 1902). By 1908, the value of 
the catch of freshwater fish from the Illinois River exceeded that 
of any other river in America (excluding rivers with anadromous fishes). 
The Illinois River catch was 10% of total freshwater fish production 
in the United States. Over 2,000 commercial fishermen found employment 
on the river in 1908 (Department of Commerce and Labor, 1911: 24, 34- 
41, 115). 

In 1976, only 2 full-time commercial fishermen worked on the Illi- 
nois River, and the 1973 harvest was only 0.32% of the total U.S. har- 
vest of freshwater fish (Department of Commerce, 1976). There were 
several factors responsible for the decline of the commercial fishery. 
Economic factors were important, as mentioned in the section on com- 
mercial fisheries in the Mississippi River. For example, at the turn 
of the century, there were many European immigrants to the United States 
who preferred carp as a food. The descendants of these immigrants pre- 
fer other types of food, so the demand for carp has declined (Sullivan, 
1971: 65-79). The development of refrigeration techniques permitted 
inland marketing of saltwater fish, which probably began to compete 
with locally-caught freshwater fish. 

However, if economic factors alone were responsible for declines 
in the freshwater commercial fishery, then similar declines should 
have occurred in all Midwestern rivers. Table 9 shows that the 
harvest of fish from the Mississippi River has remained relatively con- 
stant since 1950, whereas the harvest from the Illinois River has de- 
clined drastically during the same period. During the same period the 
number of full-time commercial fishermen on the Mississippi River bor- 
dering Illinois declined by 73%, compared to a 98% decline on the 
Illinois River. Table 10 shows that with the exception of carp, the wholesale 
price for fish (in 1977 dollars) has been rather constant or has actually 
increased from the turn of the century. 

Commercial fishermen and market operators along the Illinois River 
56 



Table 9 

Summary of the Commercial Catch of Fish from the Illinois River and 

the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois, 

and the Number of Full-Time Fishermen, 1950-1974 





Catch (in 
Illinois 


thousands of pounds) 
R. Mississippi R. 


Full-Time 


Fishermen 


Year 


Illinois R. 


Mississippi R. 


1950 


5,760 




2,923 


106 


122 


1954 


3,430 




2,726 


111 


135 


1955 


4,006 




3,893 


96 


125 


1956 


3,218 




3,310 


38 


130 


1957 


2,791 




3,224 


105 


133 


1958 


2,871 




4,208 


70 


131 


1959 


2,639 




4,349 


61 


137 


1960 


2,260 




4.224 


69 


113 


1961 


2,215 




3,175 


65 


115 


1962 


2,205 




3,464 


50 


98 


1963 


2,240 




3,669 


48 


76 


1964 


1,581 




3,238 


56 


62 


1965 


1,449 




3,470 


44 


78 


1966 


1,624 




3,455 


23 


80 


1967 


1,869 




2,904 


43 


75 


1968 


1,522 




2,670 


38 


56 


1969 


1,911 




2,889 


30 


48 


1970 


919 




3,178 


22 


59 


1971 


1,327 




3,041 


9 


54 


1972 


655 




3,247 


13 


75 


1973 


399 




3,610 


13 


79 


1974 


571 




3,375 


15 


90 


1975 


474 




3,371 


1 


51 


1976 


433 




2,467 


2 


33 



Note: Most of the statistics were obtained from statistical digests 
published by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The 1972-1976 data and 
the number of full-time commercial fishermen on the two rivers were pro- 
vided by Mr. Larry Dunham, Staff Fisheries Biologist, Special Projects, 
Illinois Department of Conservation. 

57 



Table 10 



Calculated Wholesale (Undressed) Prices Paid to Illinois River 

Commercial Fishermen for Catches of Carp, Buffalo, Channel Catfish, 

and Freshwater Drum in 1894, 1899, 1922, 1931, 1950, 1955, I960, 1965, 

and 1970 a ~ 



Ca rp Buffalo Channel Catfish Freshwater Drum 

1977 1977 1977 1977 

Year $/lb. $/lb. S/lb. $/lb. $/lb. $/lb. $/lb. $/lb. 

1894 .026 .205 .024 .189 .037 .292 .018 .142 



1899 


.026 


.188 


.027 


.196 


.036 


.261 


.021 


.152 


1922 


.045 


.176 


.064 


.250 


.148 


.578 


.067 


.262 


1931 


.024 


.124 


.049 


.254 


.092 


.477 


.051 


.264 


1950 


.041 


.098 


.093 


.222 


.205 


.489 


.095 


.226 


1955 


.040 


.089 


.090 


.200 


.240 


.533 


.070 


.155 


1960 


.048 


.099 


.098 


.201 


.250 


.514 


.080 


.164 


1965 


.044 


.089 


.085 


.172 


.215 


.434 


.063 


.127 


1970 


.055 


.097 


.116 


.205 


.272 


.480 


.076 


.134 



Obtained from Bellrose et al. (1977: C-108-C-109, Table C-38) 
by dividing the dollar value of the catch by its weight in pounds. 

Obtained by using conversion factors in Table 19. 



58 



were interviewed in 1977, as part of another project (Bellrose et al. , 
1977: B8-B9). These interviews indicated there is a demand for fish 
along the Illinois River which currently cannot be net from the Illinois 
River fishery. For example, Dixon's Fish Market on Peoria Lake (a 
main stem lake on the Illinois River upstream from the study area) 
purchases carp from Wisconsin for use in their fee-fishing areas and 
channel catfish from fish farms in Arkansas for wholesale and retail 
trade. Mr. A.T. Nelson, who operates a market on the Illinois River 
at Pearl (within the project area, river mile 43.2), buys carp and 
buffalo from the Mississippi River and sea food. 

When market operators and commercial fishermen are asked why the 
markets do not buy fish from the Illinois River, the most frequent re- 
ply is that there are fewer large fish in the river than formerly, and 
the remaining fish are in relatively poor condition. Most of the younger 
commercial fishermen along the Illinois River work only part-time at com- 
mercial fishing. They also use pickup trucks and trailerable boats to 
range widely over the states of Illinois and Iowa to take advantage of 
fishing opportunities in reservoirs and in the Mississippi River. Al- 
though they live along the Illinois River, because their families grew 
up there, they report that their catches in the Illinois do not bring 
as great a return for their time, gasoline, and equipment expense, as 
their catches elsewhere. 

The loss of backwater habitat due to draining and sedimentation has 
affected the commercial fisheries in some sections of the river (Bellrose 
et al., 1977: C107-C115). However, the major drainage projects were 
completed in the 1920's (Mills et al. , 1966: 5) yet the commercial fish- 
eries in the Illinois River have continued a steady decline up to the 
present (Table 9 ) . Drainage and leveeing were most extensive within 
the project area of the Illinois River, leaving little more than a main 
channel and side channels (except for Meredosia Lake at the upstream end 
and several lakes and backwaters between the mouth and river mile 15) , 
yet the remaining commercial fishing became concentrated in this reach 
of the river because the carp were generally in better condition and 
more marketable (Figure 3 ) and legal-size catfish were more abundant 
(Sparks, 1975: Table 21) than in other reaches. Habitat loss alone 



59 



Figure 3. The condition factor of carp, Cyprinus carpio , in the Illinois 

River in 1963 was much better downstream from river mile 80 — a 
reach of the river where fish food organisms such as fingernail 
clams, snails, and mayflies occurred. Channel catfish were also 
more abundant in the lower Illinois River (Sparks, 1975b: Table 21). 
The condition factor of carp was poor above mile 80, where the 
fingernail clams had died out in the 1950' s. The condition factor 
of carp in 1967 showed the same pattern, but an overall decline had 
occurred, with more pronounced declines at river miles 95-105, 160- 
170, and 200-240. By 1975, the overall condition of the carp in 
the river had further declined, and localized declines had become 
more severe. The general decline in carp condition between the 
1960 's and 1970' s was associated with a decline in the abundance 
of some food organisms, such as snails, fingernail clams, and 
mayflies in the lower river. The causes for the localized 
declines in carp condition are not known. 

Source: unpublished data in the files of the Illinois Natural 
History Survey. 



o 
i— 

u_ 

:s 
O 



2.7-1 
2.9- 

3.1- 
3,3- 
3.5- 
3.7- 
3.9 



1963 




15 



30 



/ 



A 



V 



60 



, s\ , f 

/1975 \ V / 

"I 1 1 1 1 1 I 

90 120 150 180 210 240 270 



MILES UPSTREAM FROM THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER 



60 



cannot explain the decline in the condition of commercially important 
species such as carp. 

A decline in the size and condition of commercial fish indicates a 
problem in the food supply. Starrett (1972: 151) studied the food 
habits of carp in the Illinois River in the 1960's and found that in 
the study reach of the Illinois River fingernail clams comprised 50% of 
the volume of food items in carp stomachs, whereas in the middle and 
upper reaches of the river only one fingernail clam was found in all 
the stomachs examined. Figure 3 shows that in 1963 the condition 
factor of carp was considerably better in the study reach of the Illinois 
River than in the middle and upper reaches. More recent data used 
in Figure 4 show that there was a good correlation between condition 
factor of carp and the total abundance of bottom fauna in the Illinois 
River in 1975. Figure 3 demonstrates that there has been a general 
decline in the condition factor of carp in the whole Illinois River 
since 1963. 

Prior to the 1950' s the greatest harvest of commercial fish gen- 
erally occurred along the middle reach of the Illinois River (mile 80.2 
to mile 210), in areas where food organisms, such as fingernail clams, 
were most abundant (Richardson, 1921b: 462-465). Paloumpis and Starrett 
(1960) documented a die-off of fish food organisms in this reach of the 
Illinois River in the mid-1950' s (see the section of this report on 
Illinois River benthos) . Some unidentified factor apparently eliminated 
the fingernail clam and other benthic organisms from the middle reach of 
the Illinois River, with a consequent effect on bottom-feeding species 
of fish, many of which are commercially important, such as carp, buffalo, 
and drum. In contrast to the middle reach of the river, the commercial 
harvest from the study reach of the river has been relatively constant 
since 1950 (Table 11). Starting in 1962, the study reach has consistently 
ranked second in production among the four pools with commercial fisheries 
(Table 11). 

An annual electrof ishing survey of the Illinois River by the 
Illinois Natural History Survey has show, that the number of channel 
catfish taken from the Alton Pool of the Illinois River consistently 



61 



CARP 
1 1975 


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Table 11 

Yearly Total and 5-year Average Harvest (in Pounds) of Carp, Buffalo, 

Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All Commercial Species from 

Alton Pool, Illinois River, 1950-1970*' 



Year 



1950 


(3) C 


1951 


(3) 


1952 


(3) 


1953 


(3) 


1954 


(3) 


1950- 


■1954 avg. 


1955 


(2) 


1956 


(2) 


1957 


(3) 


1958 


(3) 


1959 


(3) 


1955- 


-1959 avg. 


1960 


(2) 


1961 


(3) 


1962 


(2) 


1963 


(2) 


1964 


(2) 


1960- 


-1964 avg. 


1965 


(2) 


1966 


(2) 


1967 


(2) 


1968 


(2) 


1969 


(2) 


1965- 


-1969 avg. 



Carp 

241,488 
203,818 
142,202 
638,510 
385,493 
322,302 

654,696 
668,038 
336,812 
324,168 
345,951 
465,933 

350,712 

375,541 
432,791 
279,123 
307,119 
349,057 

246,910 
313,858 
317,069 
287,971 
391,667 
311,495 



Buffalo 

172,629 
89,817 
30,120 
315,414 
222,319 
166,060 

352,652 
204,362 
136,266 
103,167 
100,703 
179,430 

184,330 
132,712 
152,768 
112,332 
119,499 
140,328 

87,623 
146,298 
196,634 
164,493 
152,060 
149,422 



Channel 
Catfish 

43,119 
29,190 
9,346 
54,817 
68,922 
41,079 

105,628 
115,936 
72,393 
67,845 
62,516 
84,864 

46,395 
39,359 
52,455 
50,096 
72,918 
52,245 

26,459 
36,907 
61,043 
33,548 
65,789 
44,749 



Freshwater 



Drum 



Total 



41,684 
21,030 
7,719 
77,069 
86,598 
46,820 

164,297 
95,917 
41,511 
59,654 
29,629 
78,202 

40,713 
21,870 
38,327 
21,706 
22,220 
28,967 

12,131 
15,833 
23,651 
9,605 
24,623 
17,169 



527,890 
354,983 
191,826 
1,123,901 
766,993 
593,119 

1,284,191 
1,115,580 
595,873 
561,004 
549,723 
821,274 

636,701 
585,991 
690,258 
472,613 
526,161 
582,345 

374,353 
524,174 
605,184 
505,963 
642,615 
530,458 



1970 (2) 



185,111 104,668 



30,975 10,870 



337,202 



Unpublished data compiled by the late Dr. William C. Starrett, Illinois 
Natural History Survey. 

Includes species listed plus all other commercial species. 

C Indicates rank of Alton Pool among the lower four Illinois River pools 
(Starved Rock, Peoria, LaGrange, and Alton) in total harvest. 



63 



exceeds the number taken from any of the upstream pools (Figure 5) . The 
number of carp taken by electrof ishing is generally equal to, or less 
than the number taken in upstream pools (Figure 6) . As mentioned above 
(see Table 10), carp has been a low-priced fish in recent times (10c per 
pound wholesale, for undressed fish, in 1977 dollars), while channel 
catfish have been relatively high-priced (48c per pound wholesale for 
undressed fish, in 1977 dollars). 

Effects of the Navigation System on the Commercial Fishery . The 
commercial fishery in the study reach of the Illinois River is not as 
productive as it was at the turn of the century, but is in considerably 
better condition than the fishery in the middle and upper reaches of 
the Illinois River. Draining and leveeing of the flood plain in the 
1920 's removed many backwaters and lakes which once produced the bulk of 
both commercial and sport species of fish. The only lakes remaining 
in the study reach are Meredosia Lake, and a few backwaters between 
river mile 66 and 78, and a few other lakes and backwaters between 
the mouth and river mile 15. Dam 26 at Alton increased the backwater 
acreage in the lower portion of the Illinois River, thereby increasing 
fish habitat, but we do not have quantitative data on the amount of 
increase. 

The reduction in the quality and quantity of aquatic habitat due 
to sedimentation in Lake Meredosia, a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Refuge, 
has been discussed in the sedimentation section. It is possible that resus- 
pension of bottom sediments by barge traffic in the main channel has contri- 
buted to sedimentation in the remaining lakes and backwaters in the study 
reach. In the reach of the river immediately above the study reach, commer- 
cially important species of fish have been affected by a die-off of the 
benthic organisms they feed upon. The die-off is apparently related to an 
upstream source of toxicity (and not to the nine-foot channel project), 
which is sufficiently diluted or otherwise removed from the river so 
that fish food organisms can survive in the study reach. Boat traffic and 
dredging and spoil operations may affect commercial species of fish and the 
organisms upon which they feed. Some commercial fishermen report that they 
do not fish in the main channel borders, because the currents and 
wave wash associated with passage of barges collapses their nets. 

6A 



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66 



Commercial Fishery — Mississippi River 

A literature search for sources pertaining to the commercial 
fishery of the upper Mississippi River yielded several references of 
a quantitative nature dating from 1894 to 1976. However, fishery 
statistics published prior to the construction of the nine-foot navi- 
gation system (Smith, 1898; Townsend, 1902; Sette, 1925; and Fiedler, 
1933) provided data only for the entire Mississippi River bordering 
Illinois (pools 12 through B-26, inclusive). Pre-construction data 
for the study area encompassed by pools 24, 25, and 26 were unavailable. 
For comparison with the earlier period, post-construction fishery 
statistics (Anderson and Peterson, 1953; Anderson and Power, 1957; 
Power, 1962; Lyles, 1967; and Wheeland, 1973) were used. 

In addition to the above broad comparison of the pre- and post- 
construction commercial fishery, the following data were compiled: 
(1) commercial fishery statistics for pools 24, 25, and 26 for the 
period 1953-1976 (UMRCC, 1954-1977); (2) number of full-time and part- 
time Illinois commercial fishermen on the upper Mississippi River, 
1950-1970 (Starrett, unpublished); and (3) a comparison of the harvest 
of commercial fish by Illinois fishermen from a pooled section of the 
Mississippi River (pools 12-26, Dubuque, Iowa to Alton, Illinois) and 
an unpooled section (B-26, Alton to Cairo, Illinois), 1950-1970 
(Starrett, unpublished). 

Subsections within the discussion of the commercial fishery deal with 
(1) historical aspects of the fishery; (2) changes in species composition 
of the commercial catch, 1894-1970; (3) recent trends in the fishery, 
1950-1976; and (4) an economic evaluation of the fishery. 

Historical Perspective . An excellent historical view of the 
commercial fishery of the upper Mississippi River is given by Carlander 
(1954: 57-70). It appears that an organized commercial fishery did not 
begin until the late 1800' s. Reliable statistical records date from 1894 
when the U.S. Commission of Fish and Fisheries (succeeded by the Bureau 
of Fisheries and Fish and Wildlife Service) began compiling quantitative 



67 



harvest data for the upper Mississippi River. By 1886, however, the 
commercial harvest by Iowa fishermen was of some magnitude, as described 
in the following account by Aldrich (1886: 10): 

Up to within a few years, the annual catch of fish from 
the Iowa side of the Mississippi, and from the waters of 
the lakes and rivers in the interior of the state, is es- 
timated to have been not less than 4,000,000 pounds! Of 
this vast quantity of fish, at least 2,000,000 pounds 
were taken at the mouths of Iowa rivers emptying into the 
Mississippi and Missouri. 

Illinois fishermen reported similar success in the late part of 
the nineteenth century, with the total annual harvest averaging about 
4 million pounds between 1894-1899 (Tables 12-13). The 1906-1908 Report 
of the Illinois Fish Commissioners (Cohen et al. , 1908: 18) stated that: 

It is encouraging to conclude, for a comparison of avail- 
able statistics, that we have no reason to believe that the 
general fishery product of our rivers . . . /has declined/ 
either in value or amount . . . between 1896 and 1901. 

As will be discussed in detail later, the magnitude of the upper 
Mississippi River commercial fishery, in both poundage and monetary 
value, has not changed significantly over the past eighty years, but 
the species composition has changed. 

Pre- and Post-Construction Statistics on Harvests and Number of 
Fishermen, 1894-1970 . Tables 12-20 show the commercial harvest of fish 
from the upper Mississippi River by Illinois fishermen in the pre- 
construction years of 1894, 1899, 1922, and 1931 and in the post-con- 
struction years of 1950, 1955, i960, 1965, and 1970. The data indicate 
a somewhat stable total catch throughout the period of 3-4 million pounds. 
A maximum harvest of 4.3 million pounds was reported in 1899, with a 
minimum of 1.3 million pounds in 1931. 

Although it might seem reasonable to compare the total harvest and 
market value of commercial fish in 1931 and 1950, the nearest pre- and 



63 



Table 12 

f ~ Commercial Harvest of Fish. Musse ls, Turtles, and Frnc . 

!!d lill 1SS1SS3 : PP1 R1 T er B ° rdPrin * Illinois ^ Hingis Fishe rs 
and Number of Mi ssis si pp i River Commerc ial Fishermen Ljjjj jgj 5 
Illinois in 1894 a ' 



Species 



Lake sturgeon 


37,366 


Shovelnose sturgeon 


40,297 


Paddlefish 


117,446 


Bowfin 




American eel 


17,781 


Mooneye 


4,171 


Northern pike 


9,685 


Carp 


235,848 


Carpsuckers 




Suckers 


231,541 


Buffalo 


1,937,596 


Catfish 


806,120 


Bullheads 




White bass, yellow bass, 




rock bass 


44,786 


Sunfish d 


16,096 


Black bass 


19,688 


Crappie 


19,909 


Yellow perch 


735 


Walleye 


17,764 


Freshwater drum 


421,722 


Other fish 




Mussel shells 


47,500 


Turtles 


4,300 


Frogs 




Total 


4,030,531 


Total, fish only 


3,978,551 



Number of full-time fishermen 
Number of part-time fishermen 
Total fishermen 



Smith, 1898. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21. 
Includes goldeye. 
^luegill and green sunfish. 



Value, $ 

1,013 
1,041 
2,284 

1,201 

103 

505 

5,171 

5,349 
50,026 
36,362 

2,367 

460 

1,304 

817 

22 

1,010 

10,863 

665 
61 



120,624 
119,898 



771 



1977 $ D 

7,994 

8,215 

18,023 

9,477 

813 

3,985 

40,804 

42,209 
394,755 
286,933 

18,678 

3,630 
10,290 

6,447 
174 

7,970 
85,720 

5,248 
481 



951,844 
946,115 



69 



Table 13 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 1899 a 





Species 


Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 


30,794 


1,094 


7,926 


Shovelnose sturgeon 


104,644 


2,155 


15,613 


Paddlefish 


148,216 


4,171 


30,219 


Bowf in 


- 


- 


- 


American eel 


16,050 


937 


6,789 


Mooneye 


1,805 


59 


427 


Northern pike 


5,475 


309 


2,239 


Carp 


1,446,698 


27,983 


202,737 


Carpsuckers 


- 


- 


- 


Suckers 


125,610 


3,416 


24,749 


Euffalo 


1,576,998 


40,544 


293,741 


Catfish 


468,403 


24,919 


180,538 


Bullheads 


- 


- 


- 


White bass, yellow bass, 


10,797 


533 


3,862 


rock bass 








Sunfish d 


33,641 


1,029 


7,455 


Black bass 


18,744 


1,250 


9,056 


Crappie 


57,044 


2,343 


16,975 


Yellow perch 


1,521 


55 


398 


Walleye 


15,040 


890 


6,448 


Freshwater drum 


253,696 


6,532 


47,324 


Other fish 


12,410 


59 


427 


Mussel shells 


8,910,000 


43,468 


314,926 


Turtles 


129,735 


2,373 


17,192 


Frogs 


4,422 


536 


3,883 


Total 


13,371,923 


164,655 


1,192,925 


Total, fish only 


4,327,766 


118,278 


856,924 



Number of full-time fishermen 
Number of part-time fishermen 
Total fishermen 



1,149 



Townsend, 1902. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21, 

Includes goldeye. 

Bluegill and green sunfish. 



70 



Table 14 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 1922 a 





Species 


Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977$ b 


Lake sturgeon 


_ 


_ 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 


56,000 


4,380 


17,108 


Paddlefish 


40,500 


3,545 


13,847 


Bowfin 


5,100 


254 


992 


American eel 


4,000 


215 


840 


Mooneye 


- 


- 


- 


northern pike 


- 


- 


- 


Carp 


1,105,525 


61,637 


240,754 


Carpsuckers 


- 


- 


- 


Suckers 


28,300 


1,972 


7,703 


Buffalo 


584,675 


53,959 


210,764 


Catfish 


385,955 e 


45,479 


177,641 


Bullheads 


- 


- 


- 


White bass, yellow bass, 


6,300 


486 


1,898 


rock bass 








Sunfish d 


11,200 


960 


3,750 


Black bass 


4,800 


480 


1,875 


Crappie 


15,575 


1,327 


5,183 


Yellow perch 


4,000 


320 


1,250 


Walleye 


500 


25 


98 


Freshwater drum 


293,550 


23,330 


91,127 


Other fish 


7,000 


410 


1,601 


Mussel shells 


468,000 


11,436 


44,669 


Turtles 


12,000 


40 


156 


Frogs 


- 


- 


• - 


Total 


3,033,524 


212,574 


830,314 


Total, fish only 


2,553,524 


201,098 


785,489 



Number of full-time fishermen 
Number of part-time fishermen 
Total fishermen 



a Sette, 1925. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21. 

C Includes goldeye. 

Bluegill and green sunfish. 
e Includes bullheads. 



71 



Table 15 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 1931 a 













Species 




Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 




_ 


_ 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 




25,366 


2,680 


13,893 


Paddlefish 




23,485 


2,095 


10,860 


Bowfin 




- 


- 


- 


American eel 




835 


44 


228 


Mooneye 




1,000 


20 


104 


Northern pike 




- 


- 


- 


Carp 




562,999 


20,350 


105,494 


Carpsuckers 




2,900 


122 


632 


Suckers 




7,255 


310 


1,607 


Buffalo 




252,632 


16,016 


83,027 


Catfish 




296,374 e 


31,882 


165,276 


Bullheads 




- 


- 


- 


White bass, yellow bass, 


100 


15 


78 


rock bass 










Sunfish d 




- 


- 


- 


Black bass 




- 


- 


- 


Crappie 




- 


- 


- 


Yellow perch 




- 


- 


- 


Walleye 




- 


- 


- 


Freshwater drum 




105,982 


6,369 


33,017 


Other fish 




- 


- 


- 


Mussel shells 


1 


,238,566 


10,167 


52,706 


Turtles 




250 


8 


41 


Frogs 




- 


- 


- 


Total 


2 


,517,744 


92,527 


479,660 


Total, fish only 


1 


,278,928 


82,352 


426,913 


Number of full-time 


fishermen 


196 




Number of part-time 


fishermen 


234 




Total fishermen 






430 





Fiedler, 1933. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21. 
c, 



'Includes goldeye. 
Bluegill and gret 
Includes bullheads. 



Bluegill and green sunfish. 



72 



Table 16 

The Commercial Hardest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 195C a 













Species 




Pounds 


Value , $ 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 




_ 


_ 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 
Paddlefish 




2,800 
41,800 


626 
7,504 


1,492 
17,882 


Bowf in 




900 


45 


107 


American eel 
Mooneye 
Northern pike 
Carp 




600 
200 

1,016,300 


92 
4 

52,635 


219 
10 

125,429 


Carpsuckers 
Suckers 




15,800 
7,000 


427 
301 


1,018 

717 


Buffalo 




1,054,600 


111,951 


266,779 


Catfish 




398,300 


93,811 


223,552 


Bullheads 




18,200 


3,532 


8,417 


White bass, yellow bass, 








rock bass 
Sunfish d 




_ 


_ 


_ 


Black bass 




- 


- 


- 


Crappie 
Yellow perch 




~ 


~ 


~ 


Walleye 
Freshwater drum 




366,500 


37,607 


89,617 


Other fish 




- 


- 


- 


Mussel shells 




- 


- 


- 


Turtles 




- 


- 


- 


Frogs 




- 


- 


. 


Total 




2,923,000 


308,535 


735,239 


Total, fish only 




2,923,000 


308,535 


735,239 


Number of full-time 


fishermen 


122 




Number of part-time 


fishermen 


126 




Total fishermen 






248 





a Anderson and Peterson, 1953. 
Conversion factors given in Table 21. 



Bluegill and green sunfish. 



73 



Table 17 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 
from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 
and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 
Licensed in Illinois in 1955 













Species 




Pounds 


Value, S 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 




_ 


_ 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 




51,600 


9,288 


20,620 


Paddlefish 




122,600 


13,278 


29,477 


Bowf in 




900 


27 


60 


American eel 




1,000 


80 


178 


Mooneye 




400 


16 


36 


Northern pike 




- 


- 


- 


Carp 




1,458,600 


58,336 


129,506 


Carpsuckers 




43,700 


2,185 


4,851 


Suckers 




800 


24 


53 


Euffalo 




1,043,200 


93,888 


208,431 


Catfish 




628,700 e 


150,888 


334,971 


Bullheads 




- 


- 


- 


White bass, yellow bass, 








rock bass 




~ 


— 


— 


Sunfish d 




- 


- 


- 


Black bass 




- 


- 


- 


Crappie 




10,000 


1,803 


4,003 


Yellow perch 




- 


- 


- 


Walleye 




- 


- 


- 


Freshwater drum 




531,300 


37,191 


82,564 


Other fish 




- 


- 


- 


Mussel shells 




- 


- 


- 


Turtles 




- 


- 


- 


Frogs 




- 


- 


- 


Total 




3,892,800 


367,004 


814,749 


Total, fish only 




3,892,800 


367,004 


814,749 


Number of full-tine 


fishermen 


125 




Number of part-time 


fishermen 


182 

307 £ 




Total fishermen 









Anderson and Power, 1957. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21. 

Includes goldeye. 

Bluegill and green sunfish. 

e Includes bullheads. 

Starrett, unpublished. 

74 



Table 18 



The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 1960 a 











Species 


Pounds 


Value, $ 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 


- 


- 


- 


Shovelnose sturgeon 


4,700 


568 


1,167 


Paddlefish 


29,100 


3,579 


7,351 


Bowf in 


7,600 


228 


468 


American eel 


- 


- 


- 


Mooneye 


- 


- 


- 


Northern pike 


- 


- 


- 


Carp 


1,516,000 


72,768 


149,465 


Carpsuckers 


38,900 


1,945 


3,995 


Suckers 


2,500 


125 


257 


Buffalo 


1,482,200 


144,810 


297,440 


Catfish 


601,000 


150,250 


308,614 


Bullheads 


33,200 


5,743 


11,796 


White bass, yellow bass, 






rock bass 








Sunfish d 


- 


- 


- 


Black bass 


- 


- 


- 


Crappie 


28,800 


5,184 


10,648 


Yellow perch 


- 


- 


- 


Walleye 


- 


- 


- 


Freshwater drum 


475,500 


38,040 


78,134 


Other fish 


5,200 e 


260 


534 


Mussel shells 


- 


- 


- 


Turtles 


- 


- 


- 


Frogs 


- 


- 


. 


Total 


4,224,700 


423,500 


869,869 


Total, fish only 


4,224,700 


423,500 


869,869 


Number of full-time 


fishermen 


118 




Number of part-time 


fishermen 


177 

:s5 r 




Total fishermen 







^ower, 1962. 
Conversion factors given in Table 21, 
Includes goldeye. 



Bluegill and green sunfish. 



Starrett, unpublished. 



75 



Table 19 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 
from the Mississ ippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 



and Number of Mississ 



i££i 



Licensed in Illinois in 1965 



River Commercial Fishermen 
a - 















Species 






Pounds 


Value , S 


1977 $ b 


Lake sturgeon 






_ 


_ 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 






10,700 


2,238 


4,516 


Paddlefish 






59,700 


6,488 


13,093 


Bowf in 






700 


40 


81 


American eel 






600 


86 


174 


Mooneye 






1,100 


52 


10 5 


Northern pike 






- 


- 


- 


Carp 




1 


,314,500 


63,920 


128,991 


Carpsuckers 






17,900 


1,061 


2,141 


Suckers 






1,600 


60 


121 


Buffalo 






980,200 


99,385 


200,559 


Catfish 






645,800 e 


164,920 


332,809 


Bullheads 






- 


- 


- 


White bass, yellow 1 


Dass, 










rock bass 












Sunfish d 






- 


- 


- 


Black bass 






- 


- 


- 


Crappie 






- 


- 


- 


Yellow perch 






- 


- 


- 


Walleye 






- 


- 


- 


Freshwater drum 






430,400 


32,125 


64,828 


Other fish 






7,100 f 


273 


551 


Mussel shells 






218,200 


7,126 


14,380 


Turtles 






5,300 


1,054 


2,127 


Frogs 






- 


- 


- 


Total 




3 


,693,800 


378,828 


754,475 


Total, fish only 




3 


,470,300 


370,648 


747,968 


Number of full-time 


fishermen 


78 




Number of part-time 


fishei 


rmen 


163 




Total fishermen 








241§ 




^yles, 1967. 








Includes 


bullheads. 


Conversion factors 


given 


in 


Table 21. 


r 

r Gars. 




Includes goldeye. 








8 Starrett. 


i unpublished. 



Bluegill and green sunfish. 



76 



Table 20 

The Commercial Harvest of Fish, Mussels, Turtles, and Frogs 

from the Mississippi River Bordering Illinois by Illinois Fishermen 

and Number of Mississippi River Commercial Fishermen 

Licensed in Illinois in 1970 a 



Species 


Pounds 


Lake sturgeon 


_ 


Shovelnose sturgeon 


18,100 


Paddlefish 


89,000 


Bowf in 


800 


American eel 


100 


Mooneye 


- 


Northern pike 


- 


Carp 


1,078,200 


Carpsuckers 


43,200 


Suckers 


400 


Buffalo 


1,096,200 


Catfish 


431, 100* 


Bullheads 


- 


White bass, yellow bass, 




rock bass 
Sunfish d 




- 


Elack bass 


- 


Crappie 


- 


Yellow perch 


- 


Walleye 


- 


Freshwater drum 


409,800 


Other fish 


9.000 J 


Mussel shells 


- 


Turtles 


- 


Frogs 


- 


Total 


3,177,900 


Total, fish only 


3,177,900 



Value, $ 



4,387 

10,696 

33 

20 



52,893 

2,504 

22 

147,032 

138,357 



1977 $ l 



7,743 

18,878 

67 

35 



93,356 

4,420 

39 

259,511 

244,200 



33,300 58,775 
355 627 



389,705 687,829 
389,705 687,829 



Number of full-time fishermen 
Number of part-time fishermen 
Total fishermen 



59 

93 

152* 



^eeland, 1973. 

Conversion factors given in Table 21 
C Includes goldeye. 

i51uegill and green sunfish. 

77 



Includes bullheads. 
f Gars . 
S Starrett, unpublished. 



post-construction years, the fish populations had been reduced to ex- 
ceptionally low levels in 1931 as a result of successive drouths in 
1929, 1930, and 1931 (Department of Registration and Education, 1931: 
25 and 1932: 33). Consequently, we decided to use the year 1922 as the 
pre-construction year. 

The total harvest of 2.9 million pounds of fish in 1950 was greater 
than the harvest of 2.5 million pounds in 1922, and 1.3 million in 1931. 

Tables 12-20 also show the market value of the commercial catch. All 
monetary values were converted to 1977 dollars by using conversion factors 
given in Table 21. The corrected values for 1894-1970 show that a 
relatively stable amount of about $600,000-900,000 of fish per year were 
harvested by Illinois fishermen from the upper Mississippi River. The 
highest value of the fishery was reported in 1894 at $946,000, whereas 
the lowest value was in 1931 at $427,000. The market value decreased 
by 6 percent, from $785,489 prior to construction of the navigation 
system in 1922 to $735,000 following construction in 1950. 

The total number of Illinois commercial fishermen engaged in the 
upper Mississippi River fishery fell from a high of 1,149 in 1899 to 
only 152 in 1970 (Tables 13-20). It can be seen that since 1931, the greatest 
number of fishermen have been employed on a part-time basis. 

Changes in Species Composition, 1894-1970. In preparing Tables 12-20 
it was apparent that major changes had taken place in the species compo- 
sition of the commercial harvest from the upper Mississippi River. For 
ease of discussion of these changes, the following fish groupings were 
used: sturgeons, paddlefish, American eel, carp, suckers and carpsuckers, 
buffalo, catfish and bullheads, freshwater drum, and other fish. At 
this point, only historical quantitative changes are outlined. A dis- 
cussion of these changes as related to the navigation system follows in 
a separate section. 

Sturgeons: The lake sturgeon ( Acipenser fulvescens ) was included in 
the commercial harvests of 1894 and 1899, when 37,000 and 31,000 pounds 
were taken, respectively. No lake sturgeon were reported in the 1922- 
1970 statistics. 



78 



Table 21 
Factors for Converting 1890-1976 Dollars to July 1977 Dollars 



Multiply dollars from any given year times the factor for that 
year. The result is July 1977 dollars. 



1890 


6.744 


1912 


5.745 


1934 


5.059 


1956 


2.149 


1891 


6.767 


1913 


5.414 


1935 


4.719 


1957 


2.089 


1892 


7.245 


1914 


5.537 


1936 


4.674 


1958 


2.060 


1893 


7.087 


1915 


5.444 


1937 


4.380 


1959 


2.056 


1894 


7.891 


1916 


4.420 


1938 


4.812 






1895 


7.734 


1917 


3.216 


1939 


4.897 


1960 


2.054 


1896 


8.155 


1918 


2.883 






1961 


2.062 


1897 


8.121 


1919 


2.730 


1940 


4.812 


1962 


2.056 


1898 


7.796 






1941 


4.322 


1963 


2.062 


1899 


7.245 


1920 


2.448 


1942 


3.829 


1964 


2.058 






1921 


3.875 


1943 


3.657 


1965 


2.018 


1900 


6.744 


1922 


3.906 


1944 


3.636 


1966 


1.953 


1901 


6.839 


1923 


3.755 


1945 


3.570 


1964 


1.949 


1902 


6.411 


1924 


3.859 


1946 


3.128 


1968 


1.901 


1903 


6.349 


1925 


3.657 


1947 


2.548 


1969 


1.830 


1904 


6.328 


9126 


3.777 


1948 


2.354 






1905 


6.287 


1927 


3.953 


1949 


2.476 


1970 


1.765 


1906 


6.091 


1928 


2.898 






1971 


1.711 


1907 


5.801 


1929 


3.969 


1950 


2.383 


1972 


1.638 


1908 


6.015 






1951 


2.139 


1973 


1.450 


1909 


5.585 


1930 


4.370 


1952 


2.200 


1974 


1.218 






1931 


5.184 


1953 


2.230 


1975 


1.115 


1910 


5.354 


1932 


5.801 


1954 


2.225 


1976 


1.064 


1911 


5.818 


1933 


5.732 


1955 


2.220 


1977 


1.000 (July) 



Sources: Newspaper Enterprise Association. 1977. " The world al- 
manac and book of facts. "Purchasing power of the dollar." Page 48. 

U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of the Census. 1975. Histori- 
cal statistics of the U.S. — colonial times to 1970. Bicentennial 
Edition. Part 1. Series E-23. Page 199. 

Method: U.S. Department of Commerce (1975) gives wholesale 
price indices for all commodities 1890-1970. (Note: consumer price 
indices are not the same.) Newspaper Enterprise Association (1977) 
gives the same data expressed as a reciprocal divided by 100. If 1967 
is 100.0, the July 1977 index is 194.9. The factor for each year was 
obtained by dividing 194.9 by the wholesale price index for that year. 
E.g., for 1950, 194.9 divided by 81.8 = 2.383. 



The maximum harvest of shovelnose sturgeon ( Scaphirhynchus plato- 
rhynchus ) was 105,000 pounds in 1899. By 1922, preceding construction 
of the navigation channel, the annual catch of this species had fallen 
to 56,000 pounds. The 1950-1970 average harvest of shovelnose sturgeon 
was only 17,500 pounds. 

Paddlefish: In 1694 and 1899, the paddlefish ( Polyodon spathula ) 
catch comprised about 3 percent of the total harvest. Paddlefish poundage 
fell from a high of 148,000 pounds in 1899 to 40,500 pounds by 1922. 
The average harvest of this species between 1950 and 1970 was about 
68,500 pounds, representing about 2 percent of the total catch. 

American eel: American eel ( Anguilla rostrata ) harvest averaged 
17,000 pounds in 1894-1899. The data show a steady decline in eel 
catch from 1899-1970, with only 100 pounds reported in 1970. 

Carp : Carp ( Cyprinus carpio ) comprised only 6 percent of total 
fish catch in 1894. By 1899, however, a carp harvest of 1.5 million 
pounds represented 33 percent of the catch. Between 1899-1970, carp 
poundage averaged 1.2 million pounds and continued to comprise about 
one-third of the total annual harvest. Carp replaced the buffalo 
( Ictiobus spp.) as the most abundant commercial species between 1899 and 
1922. The following are carp : buffalo ratios for specified years: 
1894, 1:8; 1899, 1:1; and 1922, 2:1. 

Carpsuckers and suckers: Carpsuckers ( Carpiodes spp.) were not re- 
ported in the commercial statistics between 1894-1922. Three thousand 
pounds were taken in 1931 (a drought year) prior to construction of the 
navigation system. Post-construction statistics show an average annual 
harvest of about 32,000 pounds between 1950 and 1970. 

Suckers (probably white sucker, Catastomus commersoni ; blue sucker, 
Cycleptus elongatus ; northern hog sucker, Hypentelium nigricans ; and 
redhorses, Moxo stoma spp.) constituted one of the most abundant groups 
of fish taken in 1894 and 1899, averaging 179,500 pounds for those years. 
However, the catch of this group fell steadily between 1899 and 1970. 
Only 400 pounds of suckers were taken in 1970. 

Buffalo: In 1894, buffalo ( Ictiobus spp.) constituted ^9 percent 
of the upper Mississippi River catch by Illinois fishermen. The buffalo 



30 



harvest fell from 1.9 million pounds in 1894 to 585,000 pounds in 1922. 
Following construction of the navigation system, the annual buffalo 
harvest averaged about 1 million pounds and about one-third of the 
total catch. Carp : buffalo ratios for selected years are given 
above. 

Catfish and bullheads: Catfish and bullheads ( Ictalurus spp.) to- 
talling 806,000 pounds constituted 20 percent of the harvest in 1894. 
From 1899-1970, catches of this group fluctuated between 300,000- 
600,000 pounds annually. Catfish and bullheads composed 10-20 per- 
cent of the catch during this period with no apparent trends. 

Freshwater drum: Catches of freshwater drum ( Aplodinotus grunniens ) 
were 294,000 pounds in 1922 and 366,000 pounds in 1950. Pre-con- 
struction data indicated a downward trend in the harvest of this species 
from 1894 to 1931. The post-construction catches from 1950 to 1970 
averaged 443,000 pounds annually. No trends were apparent during this 
latter period. 

Other fish: At various times in the past, sport fishermen would 
lobby to have fishing regulations established which prohibited commer- 
cial fishermen from taking game species. A blank in Tables 10-18 
could mean either that less than 100 lbs. of a particular species was 
taken that year, or that commercial fishermen were prohibited from 
taking the species. Whenever possible, we have tried to separate 
the effects of changes in regulations from the effects of changes in 
fish populations, in determining the reasons for fluctuations in com- 
mercial harvests. 

Northern pike ( Esox lucius ) harvests of 9,700 and 5,500 pounds 
were reported in 1894 and 1899, respectively. No pike were reported 
in the 1922-1970 period. Pike probably were always more common in the 
northern parts of the upper Mississippi River and the Illinois River 
than in the project area. In addition, commercial fishermen were pro- 
hibited from taking pike in the later years. 

A composite poundage for white bass (Morone chrysops ) , yellow bass 
( Morone mississippiensis ) , and rock bass ( Ambloplites rupestris ) showed 



81 



a steady decline from 45,000 pounds in 1894 to only 100 pounds in 1931. 
None of these species were reported in the post-construction years, 1950- 
1970, when regulations prohibited commercial fishermen from taking 
these fish. 

Commercial harvest of sunfish ( Lepomis spp.) and black bass 
( Micropterus spp.) was similarly prohibited in the post-construction 
years. 

Crappie ( Pomoxis spp.) harvests of 20,000, 50,000, and 16,000 
pounds were reported in 1894, 1899, and 1922, respectively. Regulations 
prohibited taking of crappie commercially until the 1950' s, when Tables 15 
and 16 show 10,000 and 29,000 pounds were caught in 1955 and 1960 re- 
spectively. Commercial harvest of crappie has been prohibited again in 
more recent years. 

Yellow perch ( Perca flavescens ) and walleye ( Stizostedion vitreum ) 
constituted a small percentage of the total harvest from 1894-1922. Regu- 
lations prohibit the commercial harvest of walleye. Yellow perch have 
probably been eliminated due to habitat changes, but were never very 
abundant in the study area because they have a northern distribution. 

Recent Trends in the Commercial Fishery . To determine post-construc- 
tion trends in the upper Mississippi River commercial fishery, two sets 
of data (Starrett, unpublished and UMRCC, 1954-1976) for the period 1950- 
1976 were examined. Starrett compiled total harvest records from a 
pooled section of the river (pools 12-26) and an unpooled section (E-26, 
Alton to Cairo, Illinois) between 1950 and 1970 (Table 22).. Also in- 
cluded in the unpublished files of this investigator's data were the 
numbers of full-time and part-time Illinois commercial fishermen en- 
gaged on the upper Mississippi River, 1950-1970 (Table 23). Data com- 
piled by the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee (UMRCC) 
from 1953 to 1976 provided harvest records of carp, buffalo, channel 
catfish, freshwater drum, and all commercial species for individual 
pools 24, 25, and 26 (Tables 24-26). 

Table 22 shows that, with the exception of the catches in 1951 and 
1952, pools 12-26 consistently yielded 2-4 million pounds of fish from 
1950 to 1970. The catch from the unpooled section, however, fluctuated 



82 



Table 22 
A Comparison of the Fish Harvest (in Pounds) by Illinois Commercial 



Fishe 


rmen 


from 


a Pooled Section of 


the Mississippi River 


(Pools 12-26) 




and an Unpooled Section (Alton 


to Cairo, 


Illinois), 


1950-1970 






Pooled Section 




Unpooled Section, 


Total 


Year 




Lbs. (% of harvest) 


Lbs. (% of 


harvest) 


Both Sections 


1950 






2,618,646 


(94) 


169,427 


(6) 


2,788,073 


1951 






695,460 


(96) 


32,498 


(4) 


727,958 


1952 






798,387 


(92) 


65,870 


(8) 


864,257 


1953 






2,543,485 


(97) 


75,073 


(3) 


2,618,558 


1954 






2,609,208 


(99) 


30,166 


(1) 


2,639,37^ 


1955 






3,589,008 


(99) 


49,574 


(1) 


3,638,582 


1950- 


1955 


avg. 


2,142,366 




70,435 




2,212,800 


1956 






3,284,909 


(99) 


25,255 


(1) 


3,310,164 


1957 






3,165,893 


(99) 


31,070 


(1) 


3,196,963 


1958 






3,846,020 


(97) 


118,680 


(3) 


3,964,700 


1959 






4,176,390 


(99) 


39,180 


(1) 


4,215,570 


1960 






4,058,141 


(99) 


12,148 


(1) 


4,070,289 


1955- 


1960 


avg. 


3,706,271 




45,267 




3,751,537 


1961 






2,866,097 


(99) 


13,950 


(1) 


2,880,047 


1962 






2,486,401 


(99) 


9,863 


(1) 


2,496,264 


1963 






3,270,446 


(92) 


269,220 


(8) 


3,539,666 


1964 






3,103,346 


(96) 


134,077 


(4) 


3,237,423 


1965 






3,389,774 


(98) 


80,562 


(2) 


3,470,336 


1961- 


1965 


avg. 


3,023,213 




101,534 




3,124,747 


1966 






3,266,417 


(95) 


188,151 


(5) 


3,454,568 


1967 






2,937,559 


(97) 


87,578 


(3) 


3,025,137 


1968 






2,612,510 


(98) 


57,639 


(2) 


2,670,149 


1969 






2,809,554 


(97) 


79,696 


(3) 


2,889,250 


1970 






3,055,161 


(96) 


122,739 


(4) 


3,177,900 


1966- 


1970 


avg. 


2,936,240 




107,161 




3,043,401 



83 



Table 23 

Reported Number of Full-Time and Part-Time Illinois Commercial Fishermen 
Actively Engaged in River Fishing on the Illinois, Mississippi, and All 
Illinois Rivers, 1950-1970 3 





Illinois 


River 


Mississippi 


River 


All Illinois 


Rivers 


Year 


FT Q 


PTC 


Total 


FT 


PT 


Total 


FT 


PT 


Total 


1950 


106 


169 


275 


122 


126 


248 


253 


442 


695 


1951 


57 


116 


173 


77 


152 


229 


148 


370 


513 


1952 


57 


71 


128 


41 


66 


107 


105 


181 


236 


1953 


133 


221 


354 


120 


1S6 


306 


277 


517 


794 


1954 


111 


134 


245 


135 


175 


310 


261 


371 


632 


1955 


96 


176 


272 


125 


182 


307 


228 


416 


644 


1950-1955 avg 


. 93 


148 


241 


103 


148 


251 


212 


383 


595 


1956 


88 


103 


191 


130 


167 


297 


230 


323 


553 


1957 


105 


100 


205 


133 


175 


308 


255 


322 


577 


1958 


70 


142 


212 


131 


219 


350 


212 


423 


635 


1959 


61 


118 


179 


137 


183 


320 


205 


352 


557 


1960 


69 


73 


142 


118 


177 


295 


189 


319 


508 


1956-1960 avg. 


, 79 


107 


186 


130 


184 


314 


218 


348 


566 


1961 


65 


""6 


141 


115 


170 


285 


185 


301 


486 


1962 


50 


83 


138 


98 


158 


256 


151 


302 


453 


1963 


48 


76 


125 


76 


156 


232 


125 


293 


418 


1964 


56 


59 


115 


62 


167 


229 


121 


275 


396 


1965 


44 


90 


134 


78 


163 


241 


126 m 


303 


429 


1961-1965 avg. 


53 


78 


131 


86 


163 


249 


142 


295 


437 


1966 


23 


74 


97 


80 


169 


249 


110 


299 


409 


1967 


43 


72 


115 


75 


123 


198 


122 


229 


351 


1968 


38 


63 


101 


56 


117 


173 


97 


216 


313 


1969 


30 


59 


89 


48 


106 


154 


86 


203 


289 


1970 


22 


46 


68 


59 


93 


152 


84 


176 


260 


1966-1970 avg. 


31 


63 


94 


64 


122 


186 


100 


225 


325 



Includes only those fishermen who had purchased tags or licenses for 
five or more nets. Source: Starrett, unpublished. 

Full-time. 

c Part-time. 

84 



Table 24 

Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest (in Pounds) of Carp, Buffalo, 

Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All Commercial Species from 

Pool 24, Mississippi River, 1953-1976 a 

























Channel 


Freshwater 


Total b 


Year 




Carp 


Buffalo 


Catfish 


Drum 


1953 




45,918 


39,224 


20,009 


16,845 


130,763 


1954 




68,428 


59,374 


50,196 


53,253 


242,793 


1955 




102,951 


89,026 


38,015 


63,785 


302,221 


1956 




70,597 


79,896 


43,472 


51,112 


257,139 


1957 




70,890 


93,457 


57,729 


50,003 


280,813 


1953-1957 avg. 


(14)° 


71,757 


72,195 


41,884 


47,000 


242,746 


1958 




57,166 


39,148 


48,821 


26,037 


181,861 


1959 




88,612 


51,303 


50,864 


40,521 


248,593 


1960 




70,053 


48,080 


41,384 


17,419 


185,385 


1961 




89,839 


42,518 


45,970 


39,067 


230,594 


1962 




121,788 


52,338 


35,780 


26,672 


244,421 


1958-1962 avg. 


(18) 


85,492 


46,655 


44,564 


29,943 


218,171 


1963 




345,990 


61,957 


66,474 


69,291 


569,893 


1964 




149,712 


60,100 


95,780 


50,933 


368,101 


1965 




218,881 


68,664 


79,951 


66,461 


445,482 


1966 




92,241 


27,542 


72,415 


64,727 


278,183 


1967 




134,082 


34,787 


60,357 


49,329 


298,652 


1963-1967 avg. 


(11) 


188,181 


50,610 


74,995 


60,148 


392,062 


1968 




43,745 


42,652 


30,117 


16,275 


142,759 


1969 




108,417 


94,507 


38,366 


69,173 


331,089 


1970 




65,061 


34,609 


13,415 


40,943 


170,125 


1971 




37,213 


40,564 


17,957 


29,080 


137,328 


1972 




89,155 


40,084 


21,880 


43,031 


214,530 


1968-1972 avg. 


(19) 


68,718 


50,483 


24,347 


39,700 


199,166 


1973 




82,817 


39,560 


18,760 


74,793 


225,146 


1974 




293,282 


53,372 


34,408 


58,469 


446,890 


1975 




118,898 


26,833 


18,651 


16,028 


197,890 


1976 
1973-1976* avg 




61,859 


27,727 


8,483 


5,130 


107,163 


. (16) 


139,214 


36,873 


20,076 


38,605 


244,272 



uata compiled by the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee. 

Includes species listed plus all other commercial species. 

Indicates the rank of Pool 24 among all 26 Mississippi River pools in 
total harvest. 
d 1977 data unavailable. 

85 



Table 25 
Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest (in Pounds) of Carp, Buffalo , 



Channel 


Catfish, Freshwater 


Drum, and 


All Comraerc 


ial Speci 


es from 




Pool 


25, Mississippi Ri\ 


■er, 1953-1976* 


























Channel 


Freshwater 


Year 




Carp 


Buffalo 


Catfish 


Drum 


Total 


1953 




100,774 


53,985 


43,421 


87,444 


328,905 


1954 




67,811 


40,788 


56,478 


59,983 


245,972 


1955 




154,203 


114,116 


85,578 


54,145 


427,515 


1956 




121,635 


81,351 


57,447 


51,576 


335,800 


1957 




96,631 


76,543 


99,726 


77,669 


385,178 


1953-1957 


avg. (8) c 


108,211 


73,357 


68,530 


66,163 


344,674 


1958 




105,209 


89,391 


118,316 


104,037 


446,556 


1959 




94,085 


75,425 


47,910 


64,102 


287,252 


1960 




117,304 


133,189 


67,267 


85,012 


422,851 


1961 




117,567 


86,465 


58,855 


75,065 


357,160 


1962 




98,894 


60,783 


60,652 


57,265 


293,136 


1958-1962 


avg. (13) 


106,612 


89,051 


70,600 


77,096 


361,391 


1963 




130,089 


59,718 


74,998 


56,229 


327,540 


1964 




172,443 


116,983 


92,451 


97,014 


494,351 


1965 




173,966 


82,471 


69,619 


72,472 


406,146 


1966 




168,485 


117,791 


60,724 


94,325 


448,086 


1967 




170,988 


99,644 


80,608 


117,099 


477,408 


1963-1967 


avg. (10) 


163,194 


95,321 


75,680 


87,428 


430,706 


1968 




153,205 


78,386 


62,639 


41,723 


348,616 


1969 




157,060 


137,024 


63,628 


38,347 


402,735 


1970 




171,102 


117,966 


52,592 


78,649 


435,531 


1971 




138,398 


110,364 


36,185 


52,072 


344,483 


1972 




145,037 


109,839 


33,806 


37,095 


336,105 


1968-1972 


avg. (10) 


152,960 


110,716 


49,570 


49,577 


373,494 


1973 




215,535 


92,010 


42,684 


52,559 


415,216 


1974 




174,212 


118,458 


32,406 


37,806 


374,169 


1975 




202,323 


138,927 


30,338 


42,190 


429,236 


1976 
1973-1976 




215,834 


104,306 


45,003 


21,517 


406,952 


avg. (10) 


201,976 


113,425 


37,608 


38,518 


406,393 



L>ata compiled by the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Co mmi ttee. 

Includes species listed plus all other commercial species. 

Indicates rank of Pool 25 among all 26 Mississippi River pools in total 
harvest. 

1977 data unavailable. 



36 



Table 26 

Yearly Total and 5-Year Average Harvest (in Pounds) of Carp, Buffalo, 

Channel Catfish, Freshwater Drum, and All Commercial Species from 

Pool 26, Mississippi River, 1953-1976' 

























Channel 


Freshwater 


Total b 


Year 




Carp 


Buffalo 


Catfish 


Drum 


1953 




74,871 


62,095 


27,460 


26,903 


219,861 


1954 




136,647 


174,092 


56,224 


73,735 


493,986 


1955 




218,021 


167,008 


70,638 


78,670 


582,053 


1956 




80,452 


60,849 


46,099 


39,460 


232,476 


1957 




69,226 


95,506 


116,021 


61,663 


358,492 


1953-1957 avg. 


(7) C 


115,843 


112,110 


63,288 


56,086 


377,374 


1958 




151,494 


101,118 


99,452 


46,411 


405,600 


1959 




226,189 


100,570 


82,391 


86,178 


502,478 


1960 




336,906 


66,076 


75,501 


49,134 


543,231 


1961 




70,116 


56,392 


70,024 


23,996 


238,606 


1962 




51,160 


54,759 


74,119 


15,627 


209,838 


1958-1962 avg. 


(12) 


167,173 


75,883 


80,297 


44,269 


379,951 


1963 




85,303 


68,970 


59,669 


24,040 


242,656 


1964 




188,543 


154,894 


117,109 


23,125 


495,704 


1965 




237,519 


123,489 


77,783 


13,645 


464,003 


1966 




57,454 


74,447 


73,380 


18,898 


256,163 


1967 




76,490 


82,303 


67,662 


15,038 


256,184 


1963-1967 avg. 


(13) 


129,062 


100,821 


79,121 


18,949 


342,942 


1968 




133,565 


67,628 


103,647 


18,933 


342,505 


1969 




99,731 


107,729 


97,260 


17,197 


338,012 


1970 




167,450 


128,343 


90,970 


16,484 


411,544 


1971 




51,065 


88,210 


33,411 


7,330 


180,016 


1972 




183,975 


78,676 


29,312 


45,062- 


353,487 


1968-1972 avg. 


(13) 


127,157 


94,117 


70,920 


21,001 


325,113 


1973 




42,673 


41,868 


22,727 


3,780 


115,477 


1974 




107,063 


104,208 


59,043 


10,007 


293,752 


1975 




400,859 


232,501 


55,506 


28,185 


753,537 


1976 
1973-1976° avg, 




175,807 


144,034 


75,233 


27,015 


506,607 


. (9) 


181,601 


130,653 


53,127 


17,247 


417,343 



Data compiled by the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee. 

Includes species listed plus all other commercial species. 

Indicates rank of Pool 26 among all 26 Mississippi River pools in total 
harvest. 

1977 data unavailable. 

87 



between 9,900 and 269,000 pounds during this period. Note that although 
the pooled section represented more river mileage (380 miles) than the 
unpooled section (203 miles), harvest from the unpooled section was 
disproportionately smaller, with the pooled section comprising 92-99 
percent of the total catch. The reduced harvest in the lower unpooled 
section was most likely due to industrial and municipal pollutants 
entering the river in the St. Louis area (Barnickol and Starrett, 1951: 
275). Other factors influencing the fishery of the Mississippi River 
below Lock and Dam 26 were increased turbidity brought about by entrance 
of the Missouri River and lack of suitable backwaters and sloughs for 
fish spawning due to extensive levee and drainage systems (Earnickol and 
Starrett, 1951: 274). Due to these reasons, it is not advisable to 
use Table 22 for a strict comparison of pooled vs. unpooled harvests, 
for, indeed, both river sections have been altered by man's activities. 
The data are presented only to provide a recent history of fish harvest. 

The number of commercial fishermen engaged in the upper Mississippi 
River fishery steadily declined between 1950 and 1970 (Table 23). There 
appeared to be a general increase in the total number of fishermen from 
1950 to 1958, when 350 fishermen were employed. There were only 152 
fishermen in 1970. The percentage composition of full-time vs. part- 
time fishermen also changed during the period. Between 1950 and 1960, 
an average of 41 percent of the total fishermen were reported as full- 
time. Only 34 percent were engaged full-time in the 1961-1970 period. 

Table 24 shows the harvest of commercial species from -Pool 24 from 
1953 to 1976. Although the total harvest did not change significantly 
during the period, as indicated by the five-year averages, the data show 
increases in the catch of carp and decreases of buffalo and channel 
catfish. In addition, the ratio of carp catch to that of buffalo in- 
creased from 1:1 in the 1953-1957 period to 4:1, 1973-1976. Pool 24 
yielded an average annual harvest of about 260,000 pounds of all com- 
mercial fish and had an average rank of 16 among the 26 upper Mississippi 
River navigation pools, 1953-1976. 

Pool 25 produced an annual average of about 383,000 pounds for the 
24-year period, 1953-1976 (Table 25 ). Carp catch increased twofold 
during the period, with the annual harvest increasing from 108,000 pounds, 
1953-1956, to 202,000 pounds, 1973-1976. Buffalo poundage also increased, 

88 



climbing from a low of 41,000 pounds in 1954 to 139,000 pounds in 1975. 
Both channel catfish and freshwater drum harvests decreased equally, with 
catches of each species declining from about 75,000 pounds per year 
from 1953-1967 to only 44,000 pounds between 1968 and 1976. Pool 25 had 
an average ranking of 10th of the 26 pools, 1953-1976. 

Pool 26 harvests and trends resembled those of Pool 25 (Table 26 ) . 
The pool ranked 11th during the 24-year period, 1953-1976, and had an 
average annual catch of about 370,000 pounds. As in Pool 25, carp and 
buffalo harvests increased, while those of channel catfish and fresh- 
water drum decreased. 

A comparison of all 3 pools (24, 25, and 26) in the study area in- 
dicated that the total harvest of commercial fish remained relatively 
constant in the period 1953-1976. However, changes in the species 
composition were apparent. Carp and buffalo catches increased, while 
those of channel catfish and freshwater drum decreased. 

Economic Factors Affecting the Commercial Fishery . The magnitude 
of the commercial fishery at the turn of the century can best be described 
by the following excerpt from Cohen et al. (1908: 16): 



The river fisheries of Illinois gave employment in 1889 
to 2,389 men, and utilized a capital of $225,000. Sixteen 
steamboats, 200 house-boats and 1,500 row-boats were used 
in these fisheries, together with about 45 miles of seines, 
10 miles of trammel nets, half a mile of gill-nets, and 
14,000 fyke-nets, pound-nets and traps. . . . Illinois fur- 
nishes, indeed, more than one-third of the fishes sent to 
market from all the streams of the llississippi valley — 
valued in 1899 at $1,473,000. . . . The Great Lakes fish- 
eries in Illinois waters are of insignificant proportions. 
The total longshore product for Cook and Lake Counties was 
$12,500 — about $2,000 less than the sum derived from our 
river turtles alone. 



The importance of this tremendous fishery to the economy of river 
communities from 1890 to 1940 was outlined by Taylor (1951: 402-404, as 
quoted in Car lander, 1954: 69): 



89 



The population of the mid-west grew to great proportions, 
and villages grew to cities at a time when ocean fisheries 
had little access to the market. A taste was established 
for small-sized freshwater fish of the lakes and rivers. 
... In response to insistent demand, prices rose dispro- 
portionately to the diminishing supply so that the Great 
Lakes and Mississippi River system experienced the greatest 
rise in price of all the regions of the country, and is 
the only region of the country to have a higher average 
price for its fish in terms of purchasing power in the 
1921-1940 period than in the pre-1908 period. The percentage 
improvement in income in dollars of constant purchasing power 
per fishermen exceeds that of any other region. 



Following World War II, with the development of improved methods 
of fish preservation and transportation, the marine fisheries began 
to compete more directly with river fisheries (Carlander, 1954: 69). 
At the same time, there appeared to be a change in taste and popu- 
larity of various fishery products. This was particularly apparent 
in the Jewish community, as Carlander (1954: 68) noted: 



The Jewish people have always been the principal pur- 
chasers of carp shipped to the eastern markets. "Gefillte" 
fish, prepared from carp is a particular delicacy but its 
preparation takes quite a bit of time which modern house- 
wives do not care to spend. 



The inconvenience to modern Jewish housewives of preparing Ge- 
fillte led to the manufacture of a Gefillte fish product by fish food 
companies on the east coast, with carp being the major constituent. 
However, Starrett (unpublished) found that by 1960 the use of carp even 
in manufactured Gefillte was diminishing as shown in the following 
correspondence received by Dr. Starrett from Rokeach and Sons, Inc., a 
fish food processor in New Jersey: 



In reply to your letter of March 25, 1960, we would 
like to state that a considerable proportion of our Gefillte 
fish pack is now made without carp. 



90 



In a survey of New York and Boston fish markets in 1960, Dr. 
Starrett found that the wholesale freshwater fish business on the East 
Coast was declining (Starrett, unpublished). Starrett noted that of the 
21 freshwater fish dealers in New York prior to World War II, only 11 re- 
mained in 1960. Only one major handler of freshwater fish was found in 
Boston. Starrett listed reasons for the decline as (1) preservation and 
transportation costs of freshwater fish were too high, (2) freshwater 
fish businesses were being absorbed by the saltwater markets, and (3) 
the jarred Gefillte fish business reduced the demand for fresh fish. 

The expanding marine fishery had an effect on freshwater fish 
sales even in the vicinity of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. 
In a statewide survey of 271 Illinois retail grocery stores in 1960, 
Starrett (unpublished) found that 182 (67%) did not sell fresh fish. 
The main objections given to handling fresh Illinois fish were: (1) 
48 (13%) stores said they would not sell, (2) 93 (25%) said fresh fish 
would not keep, (3) 128 (34%) said they were not packaged, (4) 81 
(22%) said there was no source of supply, and (5) 23 (6%) said they ob- 
jected to buying a license. Of the retail stores interviewed, 203 
(77%) said there were very few customer requests for fresh fish. 

The effect these changes had on the wholesale prices paid to Mis- 
sissippi River commercial fishermen is shown in Table 27. In terms of 1977 dollars , 
prices changed as follows: carp, down 13c a lb. from a peak of 22c in 1922; buffalo down 
12c from a peak of 26c in 1922; channel catfish virtually unchanged, at 56e; and 
freshwater drum down 17<? from a peak of 31c in 1931. 

The overall effect of the declining demand for freshwater fish 
and reduced wholesale prices has been a reduction in the number of com- 
mercial fishermen as shown in Table 23. The sustained yield of the 
upper Mississippi River for the past eighty years by a declining number 
of fishermen is probably the result of increased efficiency of commer- 
cial fishing devices (Carlander, 1954: 59-62). Despite the reduction 
in the numbers of fishermen, the Mississippi River fisheries still play 
a significant part in the economy of river communities, as noted by 
Carlander (1954: 70): 



91 



Table 27 
Calculated Wholesale (Undressed) Prices Paid to Mississippi River 



c 


ommercial 


Fishermen 


Licensed in 


Illinois 


for Catches 


of Carp, 




Buffalo, 


Channel Catfish, 


and Freshwater '. 


Drum in 


1894, 1899, 




1922, 1931, 


1950, 


1955, 1 


960, 


1965 


, and 1970 ; 




























Carp 


Buf 


falo 


a. 


lannel 
$/lb. 


Catfish 

1977 
$/lb. 


Fr 


eshwat' 
$/lb. 


er Drum 


Year 


$/lb. 


1977, 


$/lb. 


1977 

S/lb. 


1977 
$/lb. 


1894 


.022 


.174 


.026 


.205 




.045 


.355 




.026 


.205 


1899 


.019 


.138 


.026 


.188 




.053 


.384 




.026 


.188 


1922 


.056 


.219 


.092 


.359 




.118 


.461 




.079 


.309 


1931 


.036 


.187 


.063 


.327 




.108 


.560 




.060 


.311 


1950 


.052 


.124 


.106 


.253 




.236 


.562 




.103 


.245 


1955 


.040 


.089 


.090 


.200 




.240 


.533 




.070 


.155 


1960 


.048 


.099 


.098 


.201 




.250 


.514 




.080 


.164 


1965 


.049 


.099 


.101 


.204 




.255 


.515 




.075 


.151 


1970 


.049 


.086 


.134 


.237 




.321 


.567 




.081 


.143 



Obtained from Tables 12-20 by dividing the dollar value of the catch by the 
catch in pounds. 

Obtained by using conversion factors in Table 21. 



92 



In addition to the . . . fishermen who receive all or 
much of their income directly from the fisheries, there are 
/those/ who derive income from the shipping and marketing of 
the fishery products. The net manufacturers, box makers, 
boat builders, and manufacturers of outboard motors, boots, 
slickers, and numerous other objects profit directly from 
the fishing industry. 



93 



Sport Fishery — Illinois River 

The once great sport fishery along the middle reach of the Illinois 
River has been adequately described elsewhere (Mills e_t _al. , 1966) . While 
we did not locate any accounts of fishing in the lower reach of the 
Illinois River, places such as Meredosia Lake (river mile 72-78) 
probably offered sport fishing comparable to that in the lakes near 
Havana (river mile 120) . The results of scientific surveys of the 
fish populations in Meredosia Lake in 1931 and 1934 (Table 28) indicate 
that black crappie, white crappie, bluegill, and yellow bass were abun- 
dant, even though the successive droughts of 1929, 1930, and 1931 had 
drastically reduced the fish populations in most lakes in Illinois 
(Department of Registration and Education, 1932: 33). A comparison of 
the 1942 catch of game fish from Meredosia Bay or Lake with the catch 
from other locations in the main channel or side channels of the lower 
Illinois River shows that 66.35 game fish per net-day were taken from 
the Lake, while the most taken elsewhere was 26.02 game fish per net-day 
at Kampsville (Table 29). Recent surveys by the Illinois Department of 
Conservation show that the game fish remaining in Meredosia Lake are 
concentrated in a deep hole where fill was removed for a levee and 
where some groundwater may enter the lake. Lakeshore residents have 
complained to state legislators and to the Illinois Department of 
Conservation about the filling of the lake with sediment and the 
decline in fishing. The Illinois State Water Survey reported that 
Lake Meredosia has lost 46% of its capacity since 1903 (Lee e_t al. , 
1976: 7). 

The sediment in Lake Meredosia adversely affects water quality 
and aquatic life, including fish and the food upon which they feed. On 
August 7 and 8, 1975, the Illinois State Water Survey found that the 
dissolved oxygen concentration differed by 1.0 mg/1 between the surface 
and the bottom water. This is surprising considering that the depth of 
the water is only 5 feet and that the lake was being well mixed by wind 
and wave action at the time the readings were taken. The oxygen 
stratification was probably due to lessened photosynthetic activity 
near the bottom and also to the extremely high oxygen demand exerted by 



94 



Table 28 

Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in Meredosia Lake 
(River Mile 71) in 1931 and 1934a 



Largemouth bass 
Black crappie 
White crappie 
Bluegill 
Green sunfish 
Pumpkins eed 
Warmouth 
Rock bass 
Yellow bass 
White bass 
Yellow perch 

Game fish subtotal 

American eel 

Shortnose gar 

Longnose gar 

Bowfin 

Channel catfish 

Black bullhead 

Yellow bullhead 

Brown bullhead 

Gizzard shad 

Freshwater drum 

Carp suckers 

Buffalo 

Shorthead redhorse 

Carp 

Mooneye 

Other fish subtotal 

Grand total 

l)ata from the files of the Illinois Natural History Survey River Research 
Laboratory at Havana. The nets were 1-inch mesh hoop nets, probably with 
wings and leads. Collections were made in the summer. 

Total fishing effort, 229.58 net-days. 

C Total fishing effort, 44.00 net-days. 

Less than 0.01 fish per net-day. 



1931 b 


1934 c 


0.07 


0.66 


59.07 


11.77 


33.15 


47.84 


9.77 


16.18 


0.04 




d 




0.03 


0.39 


d 




0.86 


10.39 


0.05 


0.05 


d 


0.02 


L03.04 


87.30 




0.02 


3.68 


0.39 


0.05 




0.16 


0.32 


0.55 


0.05 


0.79 


0.41 


0.16 


0.09 


0.54 


0.61 


1.88 


17.23 


0.19 


0.07 


2.16 


0.27 


0.29 


0.27 


0.14 




1.10 


0.39 


0.15 




11.84 


20.12 


.14.88 


107.42 



95 



Table 29 

Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day 
in the Lower Illinois River in 1942' 





RM 


RM 


RM 
30. 5 d 


RM 


RM 
69. r 


RM 


RM 
73. n 




1.0-3. 


b 23.0 C 


56. e 


71.0 s 


Largemouth bass 


0.35 


0.43 










0.80 


Black crappie 


1.90 


1.50 


9.56 


2.53 


0.52 


3.09 


33.67 


White crappie 


4.72 


8.41 


10.19 


5.58 


2.08 


2.48 


17.33 


Bluegill 


2.64 


3.02 


3.92 


0.40 




1.49 


13.65 


Bluegill x green sunfish hybrid 


0.16 








0.10 


Warmouth 




0.07 




0.04 








Yellow bass 


0.04 




0.47 


0.04 






0.20 


White bass 


1.09 


1.51 


1.25 


0.35 


0.52 




0.60 


Sauger 


0.42 


0.29 


0.31 


0.09 








Walleye 






0.16 










Game fish subtotal 


11.16 


15.31 


26.02 


9.03 


3.12 


7.06 


66.35 


American eel 


0.04 


0.29 












Shortnose gar 


1.13 


0.14 


0.31 


0.89 


1.04 


1.61 


4.08 


Longnose gar 


0.21 






0.04 


0.52 


0.12 




Bowfin 




0.72 








0.37 


0.10 


Channel catfish 


0.32 


2.80 


0.16 


0.18 




0.37 


0.20 


Flathead catfish 


0.53 


0.57 




0.13 




0.37 




Black bullhead 


0.04 






0.04 




0.25 


1.29 


Brown bullhead 














0.20 


Gizzard shad 


2.33 


0.57 


1.10 




2.08 


2.60 


8.17 


Freshwater drum 


0.25 


6.11 


0.78 


0.75 


0.52 


0.25 


1.39 


Carpsuckers 


0.53 


0.57 


0.16 


0.13 


1.04 


0.37 


0.70 


Buffalo 


0.11 


0.22 


0.16 




0.52 


0.37 


0.20 


Shorthead redhorse 




0.07 












Carp 


1.13 


1.72 


0.47 


1.24 


1.56 


1.61 


8.67 


Mooneye 


0.04 






0.04 




0.12 




Goldeye 


0.21 






0.04 






0.40 


Other fish subtotal 


6.87 


12.63 


3.14 


3.48 


7.28 


8.41 


25.4 


Grand total 


18.03 


27.94 


29.16 


12.51 


10.40 


15.47 


91.75 



^ata from files of the Illinois Natural History Survey River Research 
Laboratory at Havana. The nets were 1-inch mesh hoop nets, probably 
with wings and leads. Collections were made in the summer. 

Channel at Grafton. Total fishing effort, 28.38 net-days. 

Channel near Hardin. Total fishing effort, 13.92 net-days. 

Channel at Kampsville h mile above ferry. Total fishing effort, 6.38 net-days. 

Channel at Florence h mile below bridge. Total fishing effort, 22.57 net-days. 

Meredosia Island Slough. Total fishing effort, 1.92 net-days. 

s Channel at Meredosia. Total fishing effort, 8.08 net-days. 

Meredosia Bay (Lake). Total fishing effort, 10.04 net-days. 

96 



2 
the bottom sediments (up to 86.08 grams of oxygen/m /day, when the 

sediment was disturbed). Butts (unpublished report, 1975: 8) felt 
that the sediment oxygen demand was high enough, so that without photo- 
synthetic oxygen production during the warm summer months the dis- 
solved oxygen levels in the lake would be severely depleted. Butts 

(1975: 4-5) found some organisms living on the bottom: phantom 

2 
midges ( Chaoborus sp.) occurred at densities ranging from 129-344/m , 

and the fingernail clams (Sphaerium striatinum and Sphaerium simile ) 

2 
occurred at densities ranging from 86-172/m . For comparison, Table 3 

shows that the average number of fingernail clams per square meter in 

the lower 80 miles of the Illinois River channel ranged from 10 in 

1915 to 52 in 1964. Paloumpis and Starrett (1960) reported densities 

of over 24,000 fingernail clams per square meter in Quiver Lake (mile 

123) on the Illinois River in 1952. Gale (1969: v) reported that the 

average number of the fingernail clam, Musculium transversum , at his 

2 
sampling stations in Pool 19 was 40,000/m and the maximum number was 

over 100,000/m . 

In August, 1974, Sparks (1975: 53) found that dissolved oxygen 
levels in Meredosia Lake were 3 mg/1, while oxygen levels in the 
river on the same date were 6 mg/1. The readings were taken in the 
middle of the afternoon on an overcast day, and waves produced by a 
strong wind were resusp ending bottom sediments in the lake. In the 
lake, a die-off of gizzard shad was occurring, and almost all the 
fingernail clams maintained in plastic cages on the bottom of the lake 
had died since they had last been checked in mid-July. On August 7-8, 
Butts (unpublished report, 1975: 1) also observed dead fish around the 
lake. Most of the fish were gizzard shad, but some carp and crappie 
were seen. No submergent or emergent vascular aquatic vegetation has 
been evident in the lake in recent years. 

Eoopnetting surveys of fish populations in the lower Illinois River 
show that gamefish declined markedly in the main channel and side 
channels between 1934 and 1942 (Table 30) and declined further between 
1942 and 1967 (Tables 30, 31, and 32). In a side channel at Meredosia 
Island (river mile 69.0), the number of game fish caught per net-day 



97 



Table 30 

Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower Illinois River 
near Meredosla (River Miles 69.0-75.9) in 1934, 1942, and 1967* 



Largemouth bass 
Black crappie 
White crappie 
Bluegill 
Green sunfish 
Warmouth 
Yellow bass 
White bass 



1934 L 



1942' 



0.52 



1942 



1967' 



0.33 








8.67 


0.52 


3.09 


1.38 


1.17 


2.08 


2.48 


0.38 


21.67 




1.49 


0.13 
0.13 


0.50 








0.17 









Game fish subtotal 



32.51 



3.12 



7.06 



2.02 



American eel 

Shortnose gar 

Longnose gar 

Bowf in 

Channel catfish 

Flathead catfish 

Golden shiner 

Gizzard shad 

Freshwater drum 

Carpsuckers 

Buffalo 

Carp 

Black bullhead 

Mooneye 

Other fish subtotal 

Grand total 



0.17 








3.00 


1.04 


1.61 


0.38 


0.50 


0.52 


0.12 




0.17 




0.37 


0.12 


0.33 




0.37 
0.37 




0.17 








0.50 


2.08 


2.60 


3.12 




0.52 


0.25 


0.25 




1.04 


0.37 






0.52 


0.37 


0.12 




1.56 


1.61 


1.25 






0.25 


1.62 



0.12 
4.84 7.28 8.41 

37.35 10.40 15.47 



6.86 



T)ata from the files of the Illinois Natural History Survey's River Re- 
search Laboratory at Havana. The nets were 1-inch mesh hoop nets with 
wings and leads. 

Meredosia Island side channel, mile 69.5. Total fishing effort, 6 net-days. 
Sleredosia Island side channel, mile 69.0. Total fishing effort, 1.92 net-days, 
^lain channel border, mile 71.0. 

Main channel bordei 



Total fishing effort, 8.08 net-days, 
miles 75.5-75.9. Total fishing effort, 8 net-days. 



98 



Table 31 

Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower Illinois River 
near Hardin (River Miles 23.0-25.5) in 1942. 



Largemouth bass 
Black crappie 
White crappie 
Bluegill 
White bass 
Warmouth 
Sauger 

Game fish subtotal 15.31 7.55 1.51 



1942 b 


1964 c 


1967 d 


0.43 






1.58 


6.10 


0.33 


8.41 


1.25 


0.67 


3.02 


0.15 


0.17 


1.51 


0.05 


0.17 


0.07 






0.29 




0.17 



American eel 


0.29 






Freshwater drum 


6.11 


0.65 


0.33 


Channel catfish 


2.80 






Flathead catfish 


0.57 






Bowf in 


0.72 






Shortnose gar 


0.14 


0.35 


0.50 


Longnose gar 






0.33 


Shorthead redhorse 


0.07 


0.05 




Carpsuckers 


0.57 


0.55 




Buffalo 


0.22 






Carp 


1.72 


0.40 


0.33 


Gizzard shad 


0.57 


0.25 


5.17 


Black bullhead 




0.15 




Other fish subtotal 


13.78 


2.40 


6.66 


Grand total 


29.09 


9.95 


8.17 



uata from the files of the Illinois Natural History Survey's River Re- 
search Laboratory at Havana. The nets were 1-inch mesh hoop nets with 
wings and leads. 

Main channel border, mile 23.0. Total fishing effort, 13.92 net-days. 

Diamond Island side channel, miles 24.5-25.5. Total fishing effort, 
20 net-days. 

Diamond Island side channel, miles 24.5-25.5. Total fishing effort, 
6 net-days. 



99 



Table 32 

Number of Fish Caught Per Net-Day in the Lower Illinois River 
near the Mouth (River Miles 1.0-23.0) in 1942 and 1967 s 



1942: Channel 1942: Channel 1967: 12 Mile 

at Grafton. near Hardin, Island side chann 

RM 1.0-3.0° RM 23. C RM 13. 5-13. 9 d 



Largemouth bass 


0.35 


0.43 


0.13 


Black crappie 


1.90 


1.58 


1.63 


White crappie 


4.72 


8.41 


0.88 


Bluegill 


2.64 


3.02 


0.12 


Wannouth 




0.07 


0.12 


White bass 


1.09 


1.51 




Yellow bass 


0.04 






Sauger 


0.42 


0.29 




Yellow perch 






0.13 


Game fish subtotal 


11.16 


15.31 


3.01 


American eel 


0.04 


0.29 




Bowf in 




0.72 


0.37 


Shortnose gar 


1.13 


0.14 


0.87 


Longnose gar 


0.21 






Carpsuckers 


0.53 


0.57 




Buffalo 


0.11 


0.22 




Channel catfish 


0.32 


2.80 




Flathead catfish 


0.53 


0.57 




Black bullhead 


0.04 






Freshwater drum 


0.25 


6.11 


0.50 


Mooneye 


0.04 






Goldeye 


0.21 






Shorthead redhorse 




0.07 




Carp 


1.13 


1.72 




Gizzard shad 


2.33 


0.57 


6.13 


Other fish subtotal 


6.87 


13.78 


7.87 


Grand total 


18.03 


29.09 


10.88 



T)ata from the files of the Illinois Natural History Survey's River 
Research Laboratory at Havana. The nets were 1-inch mesh hoop nets 
probably with wings and leads. 

Total fishing effort, 28.38 net-days. 

C Total fishing effort, 13.92 net-days. 

Total fishing effort, 8 net-days. 



100 



declined from 32.5 in 1934 to 3.12-7.06 in 1942, and to 2.02 in 1967 
(Table 30). At Hardin (river miles 23.0-25.5) the catch declined 
from 15.31 game fish per net-day in 1942 to 7.55 in 1964 and 1.51 
in 1967 (Table 31). In the channels and side channels near the mouth, 
the decline was from 11.16-15.31 in 1942 to 3.01 in 1967 (Table 32) . 

Sparks (1975) reported the results of an electrofishing survey of 
the Illinois River, conducted annually from 1959 to 1974. Electro- 
fishing methods had not been developed at the time the navigation dams 
were being constructed. Hence, there are no pre- impoundment electro- 
fishing data. Hoop-netting and electrofishing differ markedly in their 
efficiency of capture of different species of fish and in efficiency of 
capture of different sizes of the same species, so the hoop-netting 
results should not be compared with the electrofishing results. However, 
the electrofishing results can be used to assess changes in the game fish 
in side channels (no electrofishing was done in lakes) of the lower 
Illinois River between 1959 and the present. 

Sparks (1975: 38) reported that white bass in the Illinois River 
showed a trend of increasing abundance in the downstream direction, with 
the largest number occurring in Alton Pool. The largest numbers of other 
game species, such as bluegill, largemouth bass, white crappie and 
black crappie, occurred in the upstream pools, La Grange and Peoria, 
which have the most connecting lake acreage. The catch of game 
fish increased in 1973 and 1974 when water levels were high (Sparks, 1975: 
36-37), but the increases were greatest in the pools upstream from the 
Alton Pool. 

Increased flow of water in the Illinois has several beneficial 
effects on fishes. Flooded areas often provide good spawning sites, with 
firm bottoms, whereas the bottom in much of the river and its bottomland 
lakes is covered with flocculent mud. Several people reported that sun- 
fishes were spawning on flooded gravel roads and areas of firm mud or 
sand in the spring of 1973. Flooded areas also provide good nursery 
areas for juvenile fish, provided the water does not retreat too soon. 
An increased current velocity in the river stimulates spawning migrations 
of species such as white bass. An increased rate of water flow (discharge) 



can dilute oxygen-demanding or toxic wastes. Butts et al. (1975) 
report that increased flows in the upper Illinois River initially 
result in reduced dissolved oxygen levels because combined storm and 
sanitary sewers overflow to the river, but that during sustained 
high flows, the oxygen levels are higher than during sustained low flows. 

Figure 7 shows that the catch of largemouth bass, a representative 
game species, has declined in the Alton Pool since the high water years 
of 1973-74. 



102 




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Sport Fishery — Mississippi River 

An extensive literature search yielded very little quantitative 
data on the pre-construction sport fishery of the upper Missisippi 
River. Although several studies provided recent information, it was 
impossible to perform a quantitative comparison of pre- and post- 
construction sport fisheries due to the lack of data from the earlier 
period. An excellent qualitative, historical account of the sport 
fishery of the upper Mississippi River can be found in Carlander 
(1954: 71-81). 

Green (1960: 6) reported that impoundment of the Mississippi River 
created 3 distinct habitat zones: (1) an upper pool, exhibiting essen- 
tially normal river conditions with deep sloughs and wooded islands, 
(2) a middle pool, with large areas of comparatively shallow water and 
adjacent marshes, and (3) a lower pool, with deep, open water and no 
marsh. Barnickol and Starrett (1951: 313) found that the upper reaches 
of the navigation pools provided a more favorable habitat for sport 
fishes than the middle and lower sections and that sport fishing was 
conducted primarily in the pools below the dams. They attributed the 
concentration of sport fishes in the upper reaches of each pool to the 
availability of preferred food items, such as aquatic insects and min- 
nows, and to the occurrence of deep holes and shallow sand bars. 
Cleary (1961: 143) and Helms (1969: 33) also found that tailwater areas 
immediately below each dam attracted the most sport fishing pressure. 
In addition, fish which move upstream at certain times of year, such as 
white bass, will aggregate below the dams. Sport fishermen are well 
aware of this concentrating effect of the dams. 

Since 1946, a regular count of both boat and shore fishermen using 
the dams has been made by lockmasters at each lock and dam (Carlander, 
1954: 80). Nord (1967: 108-109) presented these counts for 1959-1963. 
His tabulations revealed that Lock and Dam 26 ranked first among all 
26 impoundments in the shore count, with an average annual use by 
13,500 fishermen. However, this site ranked 23rd in the boat count, 
with only 380 boat fishermen per year recorded. The shore fishermen 
are probably people from the neighboring St. Louis area with relatively 



104 



low incomes, who cannot afford boats or lengthy trips. Fishermen who 
can afford boats evidently choose to go upstream of Lock and Dam 26. 
Lock and Dam 25 ranked 3rd and 4th in shore and boat counts, respec- 
tively. Lock and Dam 24 had respective shore and boat counts which 
ranked 17th and 11th during the 1959-1963 period. 

Several Mississippi River sport fishery surveys have been conducted 
under the auspices of the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee 
(UMRCC) . The years of these surveys were: 1956-1957 (Klant and Vidal, 
1958), 1962-1963 (Nord, 1964), 1967-1968 (Wright, 1970), and 1972-1973 
(Fleener, 1975). All navigation pools were censused in the 1956-1957 
period. Only Pools 4, 5, 7, 11, 13, 18, and 26 were surveyed in the 
three latter periods. 

Table 33 shows comparative summaries of creel data from the four 
UMRCC sport fishery surveys for Pool 26. The values indicate that the 
greatest catch rate (0.625 fish per man-hour) for this pool occurred in 
the 1956-1957 period. The lowest rate (0.374 fish per man-hour) was 
recorded in 1962-1963. Pool 26 ranked 7th among the 26 upper Missis- 
sippi River pools censused in 1956-1957 and ranked last among seven 
pools in the three later surveys. 

The species composition of the sport catch in Pool 26 in 1962-1963, 
1967-1968, and 1972-1973 is shown in Table 34. Freshwater drum ranked 
first in the catch by sport fishermen, averaging 27 percent of the total 
harvest for the three census periods. The top five species in order of 
abundance in the sport catch were: 1962-1963, freshwater drum, channel 
catfish, crappie, bluegill, and carp; 1967-1968, freshwater drum, white 
bass, bluegill, green sunfish, and channel catfish; and 1972-1973, fresh- 
water drum, channel catfish, carp, crappie, and green sunfish. 

All four UMRCC sport fishery surveys indicated that the preponderance 
of anglers fishing Pool 26 were from Missouri, primarily the St. Louis 
area. The remainder were from border counties in Illinois. 

During 1970, the Illinois Department of Conservation made an aerial 
recreation survey of Mississippi River Pools 12-26 (Dunham, 1970a). 
Aerial counts of fishing boats, boat fishermen, bank fishermen, and 
pleasure craft were made on a weekday, a weekend day, and a holiday (July 4) 



105 



Table 33 

Summary of Creel Data for Pool 26 of the Upper Mississippi River for 
1956-1957, 1962-1963, 1967-1968, and 1972-1973 



Number of Number of Total Fish per 
Date Anglers Contacted Fish Creeled Hours Fished Man-Hour 



1956-1957 3 601 1,361 2,178 0.625 

1962-1963 b 2,427 2,718 7,271 0.374 

1967-1968° 1,914 2,904 4,919 0.590 

1972-1973 d 1,485 1,508 3,814 0.400 

^lant and Vidal, 1958: 287. 
b Nord, 1964: 195. 
bright, 1970: 116. 



106 



Table 34 

Species Composition of Sport Catch and Ranking by Numbers Caught 

During Creel Census Periods in Pool 26 of the Mississippi River 

in 1962-1963, 1967-1963, and 1972-1973 

























1962 


- 1963 a 


1967 


- 1968 


b 


1972 


- 1973° 


Species 


No. 


JL 


Rank 


No. 


% 


Rank 


No. 


% 


Rank 


Paddlefish 














2 


0.1 


16 


Lake sturgeon 




















Shovelnose sturgeon 


1 


tr. 


13 








2 


0.1 


16 


Gar spp. 


1 


tr. 


13 


2 


0.07 


18 


13 


0.9 


11 


Bowf in 


1 


tr. 


13 


2 


0.07 


18 


3 


0.2 


15 


Gizzard shad 


2 


tr. 


12 








42 


2.8 


9 


Mooneye 








5 


0.17 


15 








Northern pike 




















Carp 


137 


5.0 


5 


104 


3.58 


7 


182 


12.1 


3 


Sucker spp. 


2 


tr. 


12 


3 


0.10 


17 


4 


0.3 


14 


Blue catfish 


30 


1.0 


8 


75 


2.58 


8 


28 


1.9 


10 


Channel catfish 


603 


22.0 


2 


324 


11.16 


5 


237 


15.7 


2 


Flathead catfish 


49 


2.0 


7 


26 


0.90 


13 


64 


4.2 


8 


Bullhead spp. 


11 


tr. 


10 


42 


1.45 


10 


4 


0.3 


14 


American eel 


4 


tr. 


11 


3 


0.10 


17 


4 


0.3 


14 


White bass 


62 


2.0 


6 


552 


19.01 


2 


80 


5.3 


6 


Yellow bass 


1 


tr. 


13 








2 


0.1 


16 


Rock bass 




















Warmouth 








44 


1.52 


9 


1 


0.1 


17 


Green sunfish 


1 


tr. 


13 


423 


14.57 


4 


143 


9.5 


5 


Orangespotted sunfish 




















Bluegill 


376 


14.0 


4 


443 


15.25 


3 


71 


4.7 


7 


Other sunfishes 








33 


1.14 


11 








Smallmouth bass 








1 


0.03 


19 


2 


0.1 


16 


Largemouth bass 


34 


1.0 


8 


32 


1.10 


12 


10 


0.7 


12 


Crappie spp. 


477 


18.0 


3 


209 


7.20 


6 


158 


10.5 


-4 


Yellow perch 




















Sauger 


27 


tr. 


9 


4 


0.14 


16 








Walleye 


1 


tr. 


13 


12 


0.41 


14 


5 


0.3 


13 


Freshwater drum 


898 


33.0 


1 


565 


19.45 


1 


451 


29.9 


1 


Total 2 


,718 




2 


,904 




1 


,508 







^ord, 1964: 182. 
b Wright, 1970: 102. 
c Fleener, 1975: B70. 



107 



In order of importance, the census showed the greatest usage by fish- 
ermen, boaters, and campers to be in Pools 12, 13, 14, 19, 25, and 26 
(Dunham, 1970a: 4). Pool 26 received the heaviest use of all the pools 
by pleasure craft, water skiiers, swimmers, and commercial barge 
traffic. 

Between 1970-1974, the Illinois Department of Conservation conduc- 
ted electrofishing surveys in the tailwater habitats below navigation 
dams 12-26 on the Mississippi River. The results of these surveys 
were reported by Dunham (1970b), Dunham (1971), Bertrand and Dunn (1973), 
Bertrand and Lockart (1973), and Bertrand and Dunn (1974). Results 
of the 1971 survey for Pools 24, 25, and 26 are shown in Table 35 and 
a summary of the catch of game, commercial, and forage fish in these 
pools is given in Table 36. The data show that game fish species 
comprised a small percentage (range 7-11 percent) of the total catch in 
all 3 pools. Commercial species constituted the largest percentage 
(53 percent) of the catch in Pools 24 and 26. Forage species, primarily 
gizzard shad, were most abundant in Pool 25, where they comprised 62 
percent of the total collection. 

Lockmaster counts of fishermen, creel censuses, and aerial recre- 
ation surveys all indicate that the upper Mississippi River navigation 
pools receive a great amount of sport fishing pressure. Backwater areas, 
bottomland lakes, and tailwater habitats below dam structures are all 
actively used for sport fishing. Impoundment of the upper Mississippi 
River tended to concentrate sport fishing activities in the upper 
reaches of each pool. The upper pool areas have been least affected 
by impoundment in that they exhibit essentially normal river conditions 
with aquatic habitat types conducive to the production of sport fish species, 



108 



Table 35 
Numbers (Per Hour by Electrof ishing) and Percent Composition of Fish 



Collected in the 


Tailwaters of Locks 


and Dams 24, 25, and 26 


} 




Mississippi River 


in 1971 










Pool 


24 


Pool 

No. 


25 

_% 


Pool 
No. 


26 


Species 


No. 


_% 


7 


Paddlefish 














Longnose gar 














Shortnose gar 






5 


2.1 


1 


0.7 


Bowf in 














American eel 


3 


2.7 






1 


0.7 


Skipjack herring 










1 


0.7 


Gizzard shad 


44 


40.0 


147 


62.3 


53 


35.8 


Goldeye 


1 


0.9 










Mooneye 


3 


2.7 


1 


0.4 






Northern pike 














Carp 


29 


26.4 


27 


11.4 


59 


39.9 


River carpsucker 


9 


8.2 






1 


0.7 


Quillback carpsucker 














Highfin carpsucker 














Blue sucker 














Smallmouth buffalo 


3 


2.7 


1 


0.4 






Bigmouth buffalo 






4 


1.7 


1 


0.7 


Goldfish 










2 


1.4 


Spotted sucker 














Golden redhorse 


1 


0.9 










Northern redhorse 










4 


2.7 


Stonecat 














Channel catfish 


1 


0.9 


1 


0.4 


3 


2.0 


Flathead catfish 


1 


0.9 






3 


2.0 


White bass 


3 


2.7 


8 


3.4 


4 


2.7 


Yellow bass 














R.ock bass 














Warmouth 












- 


Green sunfish 














Pumpkinseed 














Orangespotted sunfish 














Bluegill 


1 


0.9 










Smallmouth bass 














Largemouth bass 


1 


0.9 


4 


1.7 


1 


0.7 


White crappie 






4 


1.7 






Black crappie 


1 


0.9 


3 


1.3 


5 


3.4 


Yellow perch 














S auger 














Walleye 














Freshwater drum 


9 


8.2 


31 


13.1 


9 


6.1 


Total 


110 




236 




148 





Source: Dunham, 1971. 



109 



Table 36 

Number and Percent Composition of Game, Forage, and Commercial Fish 

Collected per Hour of Electrofishing in the Tailwaters of Locks and 

Dams 24, 25, and 26, Mississippi River During 1971 



Lock and Dam Game Fish Commercial Fish Forage Fish Total 
Number No. % No. % No. % No. 



44 40.0 110 100 



147 62.3 236 100 



53 35.8 148 100 



8 


7.3 


58 


52.7 


20 


8.5 


69 


29.2 


16 


10.8 


79 


53.4 



Source: Dunham, 1971. 



110 



Scientific Surveys of Fish Species Present in 1876-1903 and 1944-1971 
in the Upper Mississippi River 

Table 37 compares fish species taken from the upper Mississippi 
River in a pre-construction scientific survey between 1876 and 1903 
(Forbes and Richardson, 1920) and a post-construction scientific sur- 
vey between 1944 and 1972 (Smith et al. , 1971). Specimens for most 
records were identified by Illinois Natural History Survey taxonomists 
and deposited in the fish collection of that agency. 

In the 1876-1903 survey, 90 individual species were collected as 
compared to 84 species in the 1944-1971 period. Fourteen species which 
were present in the early period were not present in the recent period. 
These included 3 commercial species (pallid sturgeon, river redhorse, 
and brown bullhead) , 1 predatory species (alligator gar) , and 10 forage 
species (mud-minnow, Ozark minnow, blackchin shiner, blacknose shiner, 
redfin shiner, steelcolor shiner, Southern redbelly dace, lake chub- 
sucker, freckled madtom, and crystal darter) . 

Thirteen species were collected between 1944-1971 which were not 
present in the 1876-1903 period. These species were: 2 commercial 
species (spotted sucker and yellow bullhead) , 10 forage species (speckled 
chub, pallid shiner, ghost shiner, spotfin shiner, sand shiner, weed 
shiner, mimic shiner, trout perch, mud darter, and river darter), and 
the chestnut lamprey. 

In addition, 8 species were collected between 1944 and 1972 which 
were classified as accidental stragglers from tributary streams. These 
included: rainbow trout, creek chub, burbot, redear sunfish, rainbow 
darter, fantail darter, banded darter, and blackside darter. 



Ill 



Table 37 

A Comparison of Fish Species Present in the Illinois River and 

Upper Mississippi River (Pools 12-26) for Periods Before and After 

Construction of the Nine-Foot Channel Navigation System 



Specie 



Illinois Upper Mississippi 
River River 



1876- 
1903 a 



1950- 
1977 b 



1876- 1944- 
1903 a 1971 c 



Chestnut lamprey, Ichthyomyzon castaneus 
Silver lamprey, Ichthyomyzon unicuspis 
Lake sturgeon, Acipenser fulvescens , C 
Pallid sturgeon, Scaphirhynchus albus , C 
Shovelnose sturgeon, Scaphirhynchus 

platorhynchus . C 
Paddlef ish, Polvodon spathula . C 
Longnose gar, Lepisosteus osseus . P 
Shortnose gar, Lepisosteus platostomus . I 
Alligator gar, Lepisosteus spatula , P 
Bowfin, Amia calva . P 
American eel, Anguilla rostrata, C 
Skipjack herring, Alosa chrvsochloris , F 
Gizzard shad, Dorosoma cepedianum , F 
Goldeye, Hiodon alosoides . F 
Mooneye, Hiodon tergisus . F 
Rainbow trout, Salmo gairdneri . S 
Mudminnow, Umbra 11ml. F 
Grass pickerel, Esox americanus , S 
Northern pike, Esox lucius . S 
Muskellunge, Esox masouinongy . S 
Stoneroller, Campostoma anomalum . F 
Ozark minnow, Dionda nubila . F 
Carp , Cyprinus carpio. C 
Silverjaw minnow, Ericymba buccata . F 
Silvery minnow, Hybognathus nuchalis . F 
Speckled chub , Hvbopsis aestivalis , F 
Silver chub, Hybopsis storeiana . F 
Hornyhead chub , Nocomis biguttatus . F 



X 


X 


X 

X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


:■: 


X 


X 


X 


X 




X 




X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 



Key: x=present, x*=presence is accidental, C=commercial fish, S=sport 
fish, P=predatory fish, F=forage fish. Classifications of fish are 
those used by Barnickol and Starrett (1951) or designated by authors. 

a Forbes, 1920. 

Unpublished data from files of the late Dr. W.C. Starrett, 1950-1972 
and Dr. R.E. Sparks, 1972-present, Illinois Natural History Survey. 



'Smith et al. , 1971. 



Sheet 1 of 4 



112 



Table 37 (continued) 



Species 



Illii 


lois 


Upper Mississippi 


River 


River 


1876- 


1950- 


1876- 


1944- 


1903 


1977 


1903 


1971 


? X 


X 


X 


X 
X 


X 








X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 


X 



Golden shiner, Notemigonus chysoleucas , 

Pallid shiner, Notropis amnis , F 

Pugnose shiner, Notropis anogenus , F 

Emerald shiner, Notropis atherinoides , 

River shiner, Notropis blennius , F 

Ghost shiner, Notropis buchanani , F x x 

Striped shiner, Notropis chrysocephalus , F x 

Common shiner, Notropis cornutus , F x x x 

Bigmouth shiner, Notropis dorsalis , F x x x x 

Pugnose minnow, Notropis emiliae , F x x x x 

Blackchin shiner, Notropis heterodon , F x x 

Spottail shiner, Notropis hudsonius , F x x x x 

Blacknose shiner, Notropis heterolepis , F x x 

Red shiner, Notropis lutrensis , F x x x x 

Duskys tripe shiner, Notropis pilsbryi , F x 

Rosyface shiner, Notropis rubellus , F x 

Silverband shiner, Notropis shumardi, F x x x x 

Spotfin shiner, Notropis spilopterus , F x x 

Sand shiner, Notropis stramineus , F x x 

Weed shiner, Notropis texanus , F x 

Redfin shiner, Notropis umbratilis , F x x x 

Mimic shiner, Notropis volucellus , F x 

Steelcolor shiner, Notropis whipplei , F x x 

Suckermouth minnow, Phenacobius mirabilis , 

F x x x x 

Southern redbelly dace, Phoxinus 

erythrogaster , F x x 

Bluntnose minnow, Pimephales notatus , F x x x x 
Fathead minnow, Pimephales promelas , F x x x x 
Bullhead minnow, Pimephales vigilax, F x x x x 
Blacknose dace, Rhinichthys atratulus , F x 

Creek chub , Semotilus altromaculatus , F x x x x* 
River carpsucker, Carpiodes carpio , C x x x x 
Quillback carpsucker, Carpiodes cyprinus , x x x x 

C 
Highfin carpsucker, Carpiodes velifer, C x x x x 
White sucker, Catastomus commersoni , C x x x x 
Blue sucker, Cycleptus elongatus , C x x x x 
Northern hog sucker, Hypentelium 

nigricans , C x x x x 

Lake chubsucker, Erimyzon sucetta , F x x 



Sheet 2 of 4 



113 



Table 37 (continued) 



Illinois Upper Mississippi 

River River 

1876- 1950- 1876- 1944- 
Species 1903 1977 1903 1971 

Smallmouth buffalo, Ictiobus bubalus, C x x x x 
Bigmouth buffalo, Ictiobus cyprinellus , C x x x x 
Black buffalo, Ictiobus niger, C x x x x 

Spotted sucker, Minytrema melanops. C x x 

Silver redhorse, Moxo stoma anisurum , C x x x x 
Golden redhorse, Moxo stoma erythrurum , C x x x x 
Shorthead redhorsee, Moxo stoma macro- 

lepidotum , C x x x x 

River redhorse, Moxostoma carinatum , C x x 

White catfish, Ictalurus catus , C x 

Blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus , C x x x x 
Black bullhead, Ictalurus melas, C x x x x 
Yellow bullhead, Ictalurus natalis , C x x x 

Brown bullhead, Ictalurus nebulosus , C x x x 
Channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus , C x x x x 
Stonecat, Noturus flavus , F x x x x 

Tadpole madtom, Noturus gyrinus , F x x x x 
Freckled madtom, Noturus nocturnus , F x x 

Flathead catfish, Py Iodic t is olivaris , C x x x x 
Pirate perch, Aphredoderus sayanus , F x 

Trout perch, Percopsis omiscomaycus, F x x x 

Burbot, Lota lota , C x* x* x* 

Banded killifish, Fundulus diaphanus 

menona , F x 

Starhead topminnow, Fundulus notti, F x x 
Blackstripe topminnow, Fundulus rotatus, F x x x x 
Mosquitofish, Gambusia af finis, F x x x x 
Brook silverside, Labidesthes sicculus, F x x x x 
Brook stickleback, Culaea inconstans, F x 

White bass, Morone chrysops , S x x x x 

Yellow bass, Morone mississippiensis , S 
Rock bass, Ambloplites rupestris , S 
Flier, Centrarchus macropterus , S 
Green sunf ish, Lepomis cyanellus , S 
Pumpkinseed, Lepomis gibbosus , S 
Warmouth, Lepomis gulosus , S 
Orangespotted sunf ish, Lepomis humilis , 
Bluegill, Lepomis macrochirus , S 
Longear sunf ish, Lepomis megalotis , S 
Redear sunf ish, Lepomis microlophus , S 
Bantam sunf ish, Lepomis symmetricus , S 
Smallmouth bass , Micropterus dclomieui , 
Largemouth bass, Micropterus salmoides , 





X 


X 


X 


X 




X 


X 


X 


X 




X 










X 


X 


X 


X 




X 


X 


X 


X 




X 


X 


X 


X 


s 


X 


X 


X 


X 




X 


X 


X 


X 




X 


X 




X' 




X 








s 


X 


X 


X 


X 


s 


X 


X 


X 


X 



Sheet 3 of 4 



114 



Table 37 (concluded) 



Illinois 
River 



Upper Mississippi 
River 



Species 



1876- 1950- 1876- 1944- 
1903 1977 1903 1971 



White crappie, Pomoxis annularis , S 
Black crappie, Pomoxis nigromaculatus , S 
Crystal darter, Ammocrypta asprella , F 
Western sand darter, Ammocrypta clara , F 
Mud darter, Etheostoma asprigene , F 
Rainbow darter, Etheostoma caeruleum , F 
Bluebreast darter, Etheostoma camurum , F 
Bluntnose darter, Etheostoma chlorosomum , 
Iowa darter, Etheostoma exile , F 
Fantail darter, Etheostoma flabellare , F 
Least darter, Etheostoma microperca , F. 
Johnny darter, Etheostoma nigrum , F 
Orangethroat darter, Etheostoma 

spectabile , F 
Banded darter, Etheostoma zonale , F 
Yellow perch, Perca flavescens , S 
Logperch 



Percina caprodes , F 
Blackside darter, Percina maculata , F 
Slenderhead darter, Percina phoxocephala , 

F " 

River darter, Percina shumardi , F 
Sauger, Stizostedion canadense , S 
Walleye, Stizostedion vitreum , S 
Freshwater drum, Aplodinotus grunniens , C 
Banded sculpin, Cottus carolinae, F 



x* 



Total number of species present 
(excluding x*) 



109 



92 



90 85 



Number of species present in early 

period, not present in recent period 
(excluding x*) 



-28 



•18 



Number of species present in recent 
period, not present in early 
period (excluding x*) 



+11 



+13 



Sheet 4 of 4 



115 



Summary of Effects of the Nine-Foot Navigation System on Fish in the 
Upper Mississippi River 

The dams constructed in the 1930 's as part of the nine-foot navigation 
system impound water during low river stages to provide a depth of at least 
nine feet in the channel. The dams initially increased the amount of slack- 
water habitat available during the normal low-flow periods, with the 
greatest increases occurring in the reaches closest to the dams. During 
high river stages, the gates in the navigation dams are opened, and water 
levels are free to fluctuate as they did in pre-construction times. 

The environmental impacts resulting from the operation and main- 
tenance of this navigation system have concerned biologists since its 
inception. Methods of operation and maintenance with potential impacts 
on the river biota include pool regulation, maintenance dredging of the 
channel, disposal of dredged material, the construction and maintenance 
of regulatory works such as dikes and bank revetments, and the main- 
tenance of locks and dam structures (Colbert et al. , 1975: 17). 

The difficulty encountered in determining the specific effects 
various alterations have had on the fish and wildlife of the upper 
Mississippi River can be attributed to the paucity of pre-construction 
data mentioned elsewhere in this report. Gunter (1957: 13) in ad- 
dressing this problem at the 22nd North American Wildlife Conference 
stated: 



It has been suggested to me that some statement about 
the amount of the wildlife and aquatic life decrease along 
the river should be made. It would be a matter of comparing 
what the valley was in its pristine glory as a wildlife 
habitat and what it is today. But this is impossible. 
Wildlife biologists did not exist in the days when the life 
along the river began to decline. All we can say today is 
that wildlife and aquatic life has declined because its 
habitat has largely been destroyed. Great changes have 
taken place and their general outlines are obvious. The 
specific and exact changes are unknown. 



Other changes were taking place in the Mississippi River valley 
during this period that compounded the problem of identifying particular 



116 



cause-and-effect relationships. Man's activities in the river basin 
resulted in increased industrial, municipal, and agricultural pollution. 
The construction of levee districts and drainage of bottomlands for 
agricultural purposes removed fish spawning and feeding areas. Car- 
lander (1954: 25) described this complexity: 



Man has changed the Upper Mississippi River both delib- 
erately and indirectly. These changes have had their ef- 
fect both on fish and on fishing methods. It is almost 
impossible to separate the effects of the various changes, 
or even to say whether the individual changes were favorable 
or unfavorable to the fishery resources of the river. 



Effects of Increased Water Area and Reduced Discharge . Two in- 
itial effects of impoundment were an increase in the permanent water 
area and a decrease in river discharge. New aquatic habitat was 
created by inundation of terrestrial areas. Within the study area 
of Pools 24, 25, and 26, there are approximately 73 square miles of 
aquatic habitat at normal pool elevations (Colbert et al. , 1975: 32). 
Although this certainly represents a gain in aquatic habitat due to 
impoundment, comparable pre-construction acreage was unavailable at 
this writing. 

Carlander (1954: 21) felt that the decrease in river current af- 
fected the fish and fishing more than the increase and stabilization 
of the water area. Although fish spawning and feeding areas were in- 
creased following impoundment, Carlander (1954: 21) noted that as 
the current slowed, silt settled out and covered these important areas, 
Bellrose et al. (1977: C-112) found that this also occurred in the 
Illinois River valley following impoundment. 



117 



As specific riverine habitats were reduced following impoundment, 
one would expect changes in the fish species composition. In a pre- 
vious section, we noted that the species composition in the upper Mis- 
sissippi River has remained almost the same for the past 100 years. 
However, 10 forage species were lost in the period 1903-1944 based on 
a comparison of pre- and post-construction scientific surveys. These 
included the mudminnow, Ozark minnow, blackchin shiner, blacknose 
shiner, redfin shiner, steelcolor shiner, Southern redbelly dace, lake 
chubsucker, freckled madtom, and crystal darter. An examination of 
fish habitat requirements (Trautman, 1957) revealed that most of these 
species preferred a clear-water environment with sand or gravel bottoms 
and appreciable current. The mudminnow was found to require a soft 
bottom, but undisturbed clear water (Trautman, 1957: 205). Smith (1971: 
9) stated that the mudminnow, lake chubsucker, and blackchin shiner 
ranges in Illinois shrunk most likely as a result of floodplain drain- 
age of lakes and sloughs marginal to large rivers. 

In addition to the loss of certain forage species, 3 commercial 
species (pallid sturgeon, river redhorse, and brown bullhead) and a 
predatory species (alligator gar) virtually disappeared from the 
upper Mississippi River between 1903 and 1944. The pallid sturgeon was 
considered rare in the upper Mississippi River in the period 1876— 
1903 and was thought to prefer a swift-water habitat (Forbes, 1920: 
29). In a 1944-1946 survey, Barnickol and Starrett (1951: 290) found 
that this species only occurred in the Mississippi near its confluence 
with the Missouri. The river redhorse was described as intolerant 
of turbidity and siltation (Trautman, 1957: 262). The brown bullhead 
was also considered sensitive to turbid waters (Trautman, 1957: 426). 
In 1944-1946 collections, the alligator gar was found predominantly in 
the unpooled section of the Mississippi River between Alton, Illinois 
and Caruthersville, Missouri (Barnickol and Starrett, 1951: 320). 

As described above, most of the fish species which disappeared from 
the upper Mississippi River required clear, fast-flowing water environ- 
ments with sand or gravel bottoms and were intolerant of siltation and 



118 



turbidity. Impoundment of the upper Mississippi River as part of the 
nine-foot navigation system probably reduced current velocities and increased 
siltation rates. The combined effects of turbidity and siltation altered 
specific riverine habitats and probably contributed to the decline of these 
species. Dams and impoundments ranked sixth in a list of factors re- 
sponsible for the decimation of certain native Illinois fish (Smith, 
1971: 14). Excessive siltation ranked first (Smith, 1971: 8). 

Effect of Dams on Fish Migration . Dams can block the natural 
migration and dispersal of fish (Smith, 1971: 13). Hub ley (1961: 8) 
reported that the locks and dams were not barriers to channel catfish 
movements in the upper Mississippi River from Bay City, Wisconsin to 
Lansing, Iowa based on recovery of tagged fish. 

No specific information was available on the effects of locks and 
dams 24, 25, and 26 on fish migration. 

Effects of Winter Drawdowns . An early operational procedure of the 
nine-foot navigation system that had a measurable effect on fish was 
winter drawdown. To provide adequate depths of water for winter navi- 
gation in the lower Mississippi River, it was sometimes necessary to 
release water from the upper navigation pools. Carlander (1954: 23) 
stated that these sudden and drastic lowerings of water in the upper 
pools often left thousands of fish stranded in pools isolated from the 
main channel. On many occasions, thousands of fish were killed. Green- 
bank (1946, in Keenlyne, 1974: 24) found that winter drawdowns led to 
oxygen depletion and fish destruction and that they seemed to have had 
a greater deleterious effect on game fishes such as bass, bluegill, and 
crappie than on yellow perch, pike perch, catfish, and the rough or 
commercial fishes. 

Winter drawdowns also prompted fish movements from the backwater 
areas. Christenson and Smith (1965: 46) reported that falling water 
levels during the winter were accompanied by a definite movement out 
of backwater areas in Pools 8 and 9 by carp, Northern pike, crappies, 
spotted sucker, and bowfin. They also found that movement of these fish 
was intensified by a sharp drop in the water stage. 

In interviews with commercial fishermen, Smith (1946: 6) reported 



119 



that 98 out of 101 fishermen stressed the necessity of maintenance of 
uniform pool levels as far as possible. They thought that winter fluctu- 
ations resulted in a decrease in fish populations and condition. 

Regarding the effects of winter drawdowns on fish in Pools 24, 25, 
and 26, the Fisheries Technical Section of the Upper Mississippi River 
Conservation Committee (UKRCC, 1951: 25) reported that: 



in 1945-1946 ... an estimated 15,811 pounds of dead 
fish were observed in Pool 25 (Lincoln Co., Mo.) . . . rescue 
crews obtained approximately 4,000 pounds of fish (from 
Pool 25) . . . observers estimated 15% tons of fish were 
removed by the public from sites in the area and about 
11 tons were harvested commercially near Ellsberry, Mo. 
During the 1949-50 non-navigation season, neither Pool 24 
nor 26 were included in the intensive drawdown. The fluc- 
tuation of the water level in these 2 pools was relatively 
slight and no fish mortality was reported in either pool 
. . . during the same period, fish kills were noted in 
other pools which were drawn down. 



Winter drawdown has not been practiced by the St. Louis District 
since 1970. Natural fluctuations in water levels stranded fish in back- 
waters in pre-construction as well as post-construction times. 

Fish rescue operations were relatively expensive, and there was 
never any sound evidence that they had a beneficial effect on fish 
populations in the river. 

Fall and winter drawdowns are sometimes used as a fish management 
tool in relatively deep reservoirs, as a result of favorable results ob- 
tained in places like the Tennessee Valley. One purpose of reservoir 
drawdown is to force young fish out of protected shallows into deeper 
water, where they can be preyed upon by larger fish, thus preventing an 
overpopulation of stunted fish which are undesirable for a sport fishery. 
Overpopulation and stunting can occur in reservoirs, which are semi- 
closed systems. Stunting and overpopulation were never problems in large 
open systems like the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, where exchanges 
of fish between backwaters and the rivers could occur during times of 
high water. The very shallow lakes and backwaters along the Mississippi 



120 



are subject to drying out during the summer, and to winterkill when there 
is ice and snow cover coupled with an oxygen demand exerted by sediment. 
These areas would have no fish until they were reflooded by rising water 
levels and fish were recruited from the river. 

While the effect of summerkill or winterkill on fish populations in 
the total river system is probably not detectable, the local effect on 
a favorite fishing area can be disastrous, though temporary. Management 
of water levels in the pools, or construction of low levees to retain 
water in fishing areas during low-flow periods might alleviate the problem 
temporarily, although sedimentation continues to make the lakes and 
backwaters shallower and more subject to summerkill and winterkill. 

Effects of Other Operation and Maintenance Activities . In addi- 
tion to pool regulation, other methods of operation and maintenance 
of the nine-foot navigation system include: maintenance dredging of 
the channel, disposal of dredged material, the construction and main- 
tenance of regulatory works such as dikes and bank revetments, and 
the maintenance of the lock and dam structures (Colbert et al . , 1975: 117). 
The potential environmental impacts of these practices were described 
by Colbert et al. (1975: 120-127). However, an extensive literature 
search yielded very little information on actual impacts that have 
occurred within Pools 24, 25, and 26 as a result of these procedures. 

Kelley (1949, in Keenlyne, 1974: 145) reported that occasional 
complaints were received by him from people living along the river 
regarding the disposal of dredge spoil. He stated that the greatest 
concern was the placement of spoil on fish spawning beds in slough* 
mouths. Reportedly, this material washed back into the river and 
disturbed either fish or fishing. 

In 1969, a dredge spoil survey was conducted by several state 
conservation agencies, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. 
Army Corps of Engineers (Robinson, 1970). The study recommended spoil 
and no-spoil areas for dredge disposal from Hastings, Minnesota to Cairo, 
Illinois to prevent further destruction of aquatic habitat. The Corps of 
Engineers now coordinates annually with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
and the state conservation agencies regarding dredge spoil disposal. 



121 



Wetland Vegetation 

Wetland vegetation provides important food resources and habitat for 
both fish and wildlife. Therefore any change in the wetland vegetation will 
profoundly affect the entier riverine ecosystem. Aquatic, marsh, and moist soil 
vegetation in the Mississippi and Illinois River valleys has been affected by 
(1) fluctuating water levels and (2) sedimentation and turbidity. Although 
most of our quantitative data are from the Mark Twain National Wildlife 
Refuge at Calhoun and Batchtown, it is felt that these areas are indicative 
of the changes that occurred throughout Pools 24, 25, and 26. 

The implementation of the nine-foot channel increased low water levels 
upstream from the dams. Low water levels have generally been stabilized. 
However, fall drawdowns, a result of pool operations, adversely affected wet- 
land vegetation during the 1950's and 1960's. These drawdowns have been 
curtailed since 1970. 

Effects of Fluctuating Water Levels . Most aquatic plant communities 
are adapted to specific parameters of moisture and water levels. Fluctuating 
water levels affect aquatic plant communities on a short-term basis. The 
fluctuating of water levels determines, to an extent, which plant communities 
will become dominant for a given year. However, when water levels are 
permanently raised, such as by the nine-foot channel project, a transition 
takes place replacing former dominant plant communities with new ones. Such 
a situation was documented at Calhoun Point by Yeager (1949: 54-57). He 
reported that former bottomland timber areas were converted to marsh, and ex- 
tensive growths of submerged aquatics grew in the expanded backwater areas. 

Maximum production of submerged aquatic plants depends upon stable water 
levels (Bellrose et al. , 1977: C-34) . Gauge readings at Grafton, Illinois 
for 1942 indicate a substantial June flood. Extreme flood conditions severely 
decreased submerged aquatic production in 1943, 1944, and 1945 (Yeager, 1949: 
55). These major water level fluctuations adversely affected submerged 
plant production at Flat and Gilbert Lakes in Pool 26, Illinois River (Tables 
38 and 39). Refuge narrative reports for the Batchtown and Calhoun units 
indicated that during the years when stable water levels occurred, submerged 
aquatic plants flourished. Water levels on Pool 26 were relatively stable 
during the growing season for most of the years between 1948 and 1968, 
except for 1951, 1960, and 1967 when water levels fluctuated during the 

122 



Table 38 

Acres of Aquatic Vegetation at Flat and Swan Lakes, Pool 26, 
Illinois River, 1941-1944 



Species 1941 1942 1943 1944 



Cattail 




33.3 


Longleaf pondweed 


24.8 




Leafy pondweed 


1.4 




Sago pondweed 


1.4 




Bushy pondweed 


41.6 




Lophotocarpus 


19.7 


2.3 


Rice cutgrass 


29.2 


S.7 


Wild millet 






Cyperus 


86.1 




Softstem bulrush 


1.0 




Spike rush 


6.0 




Marsh smartweed 




47.8 


Coontail 


49.1 




American lotus 


83.3 





6.9 
22.7 



51.7 22. Q 



6.7 27.1 



123 









Table 


39 








Acres of 


Aquatic 


Vegetation 


at Gilbert 


Lake, Pool 


26, 




Illinois 


River 


, 1941- 


■1944 






Species 




1941 




1942 




1943 


1944 


Cattail 








39.3 




1.1 




Leafy pondweed 




0.9 












Lophotocarpus 




24.8 




13.3 




21.4 


26.6 


Duck potato 




2.1 








21.6 




Rice cutgrass 




5.7 




25.7 




11.7 




Cyperus 




82.4 




134.5 




22.3 




Softstem bulrush 








0.7 








Spike rush 












0.5 




Coontail 




5.2 












White water lily 












1.1 




American lotus 




1.1 




6.0 




25.9 


124.2 


Marsh mallow 












0.5 





124 



growing season. Pool 25 was never as productive in submergent growth 
as Pool 26, but when water levels were stable, as in 1948, 1949, 1953, 
and 1963, submerged aquatics did occur. After 1968, submerged aquatic 
growth was greatly reduced. This was the result of 2 consecutive 
years of severe water fluctuation and increased sedimentation and tur- 
bidity. In their 1975 report Klein et al. (1975: 31-34) reported only 
occasional submergent plant growth on Pools 24, 25, and 26. George 
Pay ton, refuge manager for the Calhoun unit, Mark Twain National Wildlife 
Refuge, reported (personal communication) that no submerged aquatics 
now occur in Swan Lake. 

Moist soil plant production depends upon consistent low water 
levels which expose mud flats during a minimum of 70 days between mid- 
July and the end of September. At the Batchtown area good moist soil 
production, predominantly wild millet and smartweeds , occurred when 
water levels were low and stable as in 1950, 1952, 1953, and 1959. In 
1955 water levels were initially dropped in Pool 25 by the Corps and 
then raised throughout the growing season. This resulted in the 
destruction of most moist soil production. 

Marsh plants, as a group, can withstand greater water level fluc- 
tuation than other types of wetland plants (Bellrose et al. , 1977: 
C-34). This was the case at Flat and Gilbert Lakes. By 1944, after 
two consecutive years of flooding, most of the moist soil and sub- 
merged aquatic plants had disappeared and only marsh smartweed at Flat 
Lake, arrowhead at Gilbert Lake, and American lotus continued in their 
former abundance. Yeager (1949: 55) mentions that most plants except 
duck potato had virtually disappeared from the Calhoun Point area by 
1945. Marsh plants are affected by fluctuating water, but to a lesser 
extent than other wetland plants. 

The nine-foot channel project initially expanded and stabilized 
low water levels on Pool 26. This was of benefit to most wetland vege- 
tation as recorded by Yeager (1949: 54), Leopold (1939), and Bellrose 
(1941: 278). However, Pool 25 was subject to frequent and sometimes 
severe fluctuations by the Corps of Engineers (narrative reports, Mark 



125 



Twain National Wildlife Refuge Batchtown unit, 1948-1951, 1954, 1958, 
1961, 1967) (personal communication, George Payton, 1977) which adversely 
affected the growth of wetland plants. Bellrose (unpublished) also 
reported that much fluctuation of the pool levels occurred during the 
growing season. It is recognized that there can be little control 
over pool stages when levels rise above normal, but at other times, pool 
level manipulation should take into account multiple-use decisions 
including the effect on vegetation and animal populations (Klein et al. , 
1975: 95). 

The Effects of Sedimentation and Turbidity . Since 1939 yearly 
changes occurred in the production of wetland plant communities on 
Fools 26 and 25 of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. These short- 
term changes were a result of water fluctuations attributed to either 
manipulation of pool levels by the Corps of Engineers or natural flood 
and drought conditions (see previous section). During the late 1960's 
the long-term effects of sedimentation and turbidity drastically af- 
fected marsh, submerged aquatic, and floating aquatic plants. Sedi- 
mentation and turbidity have always occurred in the Mississippi and 
Illinois River valleys, but in recent decades sedimentation has greatly 
increased for three major reasons: (1) a dramatic increase in row 
crops since the 1940' s has resulted in greater rates of erosion, 
(2) navigation dams reduced the velocity of the current, reducing 
the river's ability to carry suspended sediment, and (3) the navigation 
channel permitted more barge traffic which increased turbidity- by 
disturbing bottom sediments and coupled with increased recreational 
traffic greater bank erosion. 

Turbidity affects wetland plant communities in several ways. The 
turbidity of water is attributable to suspended and colloidal matter, 
the effect of which is to reduce clearness and diminish the penetration 
of light (McKee and Wolf, 1963: 290). The greatest effect of turbidity 
is to reduce the amount of sunlight reaching photosynthesizing plants. 
This effect is most severe during the early growing season for both 
submerged and emergent plants (Low and Bellrose, 1944: 17). Similar 



126 



relationships between turbidity and aquatic plant production have 
been reported by other researchers (Martin and Uhler, 1939: 120; Cham- 
berlain, 1948: 352; Robel, 1961: 437). 

Other factors have been responsible for increasing turbidity in the 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. Waves produced by wind can resuspend 
bottom sediments and increase turbidity (Chamberlain, 1948: 342; Jackson 
and Starrett, 1959: 163). Jackson and Starrett reported that as 
wind velocity increased from 8 to 35 miles per hour at Lake Chautauqua 
(LaGrange Pool, Illinois River) , the Jackson Turbidimeter Units in- 
creased from 174 to 700. Rough fish, primarily carp, disturb the 
false or soft mud bottom while feeding and cause sediment particles 
to become resuspended, thereby increasing the turbidity of backwater 
lakes and sloughs (Martin and Uhler, 1939: 120; Chamberlain, 1948: 
353; Jackson and Starrett, 1959: 163). 

It can be seen that several factors are responsible for the in- 
crease in turbidity of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. The end 
result has been to restrict the amount of sunlight reaching the bottom — 
sunlight needed by plants to germinate and manufacture food. 

Increased sedimentation has reduced the abundance of marsh and 
submerged aquatic plants in both Pools 25 and 26. Sedimentation pro- 
duces a soft, false bottom which covers the original firm substrate, 
making it difficult for marsh and aquatic plants to gain or retain a 
foothold. Wave action uproots insecurely anchored vegetation as well 
as increases the water's turbidity. Sedimentation also affects aquatic 
and marsh plants by smothering valuable plant beds and partially 
filling backwater lakes and sloughs in the Illinois and Mississippi 
River valleys. Yeager (1949: 55) indicated that extreme flood condi- 
tions during the early growing seasons of 1943, 1944, and 1945 smothered 
submerged and emergent plant beds with mud, decreasing the stands of 
these plants in sloughs and lakes at Calhoun Point, Pool 26. As a 
result of sedimentation filling the backwater lakes and sloughs, the 
acreage of water is reduced and the bottom of the lakes becomes more 
uniform in depth, thereby decreasing species diversity of the plant 
community. 



During the summer and fall, mud flats are often present on back- 
water lakes and sloughs of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. Be- 
fore the nine-foot channel project, only limited acreage of mud flats 
occurred. Although these mud flats were inundated by the rising water 
levels created by implementation of the navigation channel, shallow 
areas surrounding bottomland lakes and sloughs have increasingly filled 
with silt. This process has destroyed productive marsh areas, but has 
recreated mud flats available for moist soil food production. The acres 
of mud flats now exceed the number present before the nine-foot project. 

The nine-foot channel project initially created more water areas 
and stabilized low-water fluctuations which were beneficial to aquatic 
plant communities and subsequently fish and wildlife. Tables 35 and 36 
list the acres and species of plants recorded by Dr. Frank Bellrose 
from 1941 to 1944 for Flat and Gilbert Lakes (Pool 26) which are loca- 
ted at the confluence of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. This 
area is indicative of the productive areas created by the expansion 
and stabilization of water levels in Pool 26. As a result of increased 
turbidity and sedimentation, the biological productivity of these areas 
has been reduced since the creation of Pool 26. Sedimentation was first 
mentioned as being a problem by a refuge manager as early as 1947, when 
it was suggested that Swan Lake (Pool 26) be protected by dikes. By 
the late 1960 's submerged aquatic plant production began to decline. 
After major floods in 1969 and 1970 these plants have nearly disappeared 
from the Calhoun and Batchtown units of the Mark Twain National Wildlife 
Refuge (narrative reports) in Pools 26 and 25. As a result of increasing 
sedimentation and turbidity, many productive areas which initially 
supported luxurious aquatic plant growth and provided habitat for fish 
and wildlife have been degraded. 



128 



Water Quality 

Upper Mississippi River 

Information on the physical and chemical limnology of the upper 
Mississippi River was obtained from various literature sources. 
Pre-construction water quality references included Bartow (1913), 
Galtsoff (1924), Weinhold et al. (1925), Buswell (1927), Wiebe (1927), 
Ellis (1931a and b), Culler (1934), and Ellis (1936). Post-construction 
data sources included: Platner (1946), Barnickol and Starrett (1951), 
Dorris (1958), Dorris et al. (1963), Dunham (1971), and Colbert et al. 
(1975). A quantitative comparison of pre- and post-construction water 
quality in the upper Mississippi River proved difficult in that most 
of the above studies covered only brief periods of time or presented 
data from widely scattered localities. 

From about 1900, numerous water quality studies of Illinois streams 
have been conducted by the Illinois Natural History Survey, Illinois 
Water Survey, and the U.S. Public Health Service. The Illinois River 
has received most of the attention by these agencies. Discussion of 
the effects of municipal, industrial, and agricultural pollutants on 
the water quality of the Illinois River can be found elsewhere in this 
report. 

Early studies of Illinois streams were prompted by deteriorating 
water quality due primarily to increasing municipal pollution. In a 
survey of stream pollution in Illinois in 1924, the Illinois Water Survey 
identified communities discharging domestic wastes into streams of the 
state (Weinhold et al., 1925). At that time, investigators found that 
208 Illinois towns located on streams had sewers and 72 had treatment 
facilities; however, 136 of these communities were discharging some un- 
purified sewage into water-courses (Weinhold et al. , 1925: 35). Of the 
communities with treatment works, Weinhold et al. (1925: 56) stated that 
a large percentage were "poorly kept up and doing little if any good." 
In a similar survey in 1927, Buswell (1927: 9) reported that 227 stream- 
side towns had sewers and 108 had treatment works, an increase of 36 towns 



129 



with treatment since 1924. Table 40 shows the number of municipal and 
industrial sources of pollution within the major drainage basins in 
Illinois in 1927 as taken from Buswell (1927: 9). The data show that there 
were some 54 sources of municipal and industrial pollution along the 
Mississippi River from the Wisconsin border to the Illinois River mouth. 
This compares to 256 combined sources in the Illinois River drainage 
basin (exclusive of the Metropolitan Sanitary District) . 

In a 1944 survey of the Mississippi River from Hastings, Minnesota 
(Mississippi River mile 814.0) to Caruthersville, Missouri (110 miles 
below Ohio River mouth), Platner (1946: 71) reported that 



the sum of all polluting effluents now entering the Missis- 
sippi River in the sector studies, are not creating condi- 
tions seriously unfavorable to fish and other aquatic life, 
except in local areas below particular plants or cities. 



The following discussion of pre- and post-construction water quality 
parameters is broken down into four categories: (1) dissolved oxygen, 
(2) turbidity, suspended sediment, and water clarity, (3) nutrients, 
and (4) heavy metals and pesticides. 

Dissolved Oxygen . In the early days of assessing water quality, 
investigators felt that the degree of municipal sewage pollution was 
best indicated by dissolved oxygen concentrations of receiving waters. 
Therefore, water quality data collected and presented during the pre- 
construction period were primarily dissolved oxygen levels and/or dis- 
solved oxygen saturation values. In a comparison of the dissolved oxy- 
gen values in the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers near Grafton, Illinois 
(Mississippi River mile 218.5) in 1900, A.W. Palmer (Bartow, 1913: 32) 
found that the percentage of saturation averaged 76.5 percent (range 2-7 
mg/1 0„) in the Illinois River, while a parallel series of samples from 
the Mississippi River averaged 82 percent (range, 3-8 mg/1 0„) . 

In 1926, the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries evaluated the effects of mu- 
nicipal pollution from the St. Paul-Minneapolis, Minnesota area (Missis- 
sippi River mile 851.0) on water quality in that reach of the Mississippi 



130 



Table 40 



Number of Municipal and Industrial Sources of Pollution in the Major 





Drainage 


Basins of Illinois in 1927 








No. of 


No. 


of Towns 


No. of Industries 






Towns 


with 


Treatment 


Producing 


Pollution 


Drainage Basin 


Having 


Sewers 


Part. 


or Complete Organic 


Inorganic 


Rock. 




20 




6 


55 


34 


Fox 




18 




12 


12 


11 


DesPlaines and 




33 




21 


18 


26 


Illinois A b 














Illinois B^ 




27 




13 


25 


58 


Illinois C d 




10 




5 


12 


8 


Vermilion (Illinc 


•is) 


3 




1 


6 


8 


Iroquois and 




11 




4 


12 


4 


Kankakee 














Mackinaw 




4 




1 


12 


4 


Sangamon 




15 




4 


23 


87 


Vermilion (Wabash) 




5 




3 


13 


21 


Kaskaskia 




16 




8 


46 


102 


Little Wabash 




7 




4 


6 





Emb arras 




8 




2 


4 


7 


Big Muddy- 




13 




9 


13 


102 


Saline 




3 




2 


3 


33 


Mississippi A e 




5 




I 


10 


8 


Mississippi B f 




5 




4 


7 


2 


Mississippi C g 




3 







5 


4 


Mississippi D h 




11 




3 


15 


35 


Ohio 




5 




2 


4 


2 


Wabash 




5 




3 


9 


5 


Totals 




227 




108 


305 


559 



Source: Buswell, 1927: 9. 

exclusive of the Metropolitan Sanitary District of Chicago. 

Upper Illinois River to Vermilion River mouth. 

Vermilion River mouth to Sangamon River mouth. 

Sangamon River mouth to Illinois River mouth. 

Wisconsin border to Moline, Illinois. 

Moline, Illinois to Hamilton, Illinois. 
S Hamilton, Illinois to Illinois River mouth. 

Illinois River mouth to Ohio River mouth. 



131 



River (Wiebe, 1927). During August and September, 1926, the dissolved 
oxygen content of the Mississippi ranged from 60 to 90 percent saturation 
above the Twin Cities, but was greatly reduced (4 to 50 percent) for 
several miles below that metropolitan area (Wiebe, 1927: 143). 

The first extensive limnological survey of the upper Mississippi 
River was made by the U.S. Bureau of Fisheries in 1921 (Galtsoff, 1924). 
The survey was conducted on a 455-mile segment of the Mississippi from 
Hastings, Minnesota (Mississippi River mile 814.0) to Alexandria, 
Missouri (Mississippi River mile 359.0). Primarily concerned with 
the composition, amount, and distribution of plankton in the river, the 
survey party also collected data on discharge, suspended sediment, 
water clarity, and water temperature. Unfortunately, dissolved oxygen 
levels were not determined, leaving a void of information on this 
parameter for the period just prior to construction of the nine-foot 
navigation system. 

In 1944, after construction of the nine-foot navigation system, 
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service conducted water quality studies of 
the Mississippi River from Hastings, Minnesota to Caruthersville, Mis- 
souri (Platner, 1946). The mean oxygen content of the Mississippi 
during a period of low water was 5.0 mg/1; in high water it averaged 
7.6 mg/1; and in midwinter, 13.6 mg/1 (Platner, 1946: 74). In summing 
up the general water quality of the Mississippi in 1944, Platner (1946: 
72) stated: "Comparing the water quality of the Mississippi River with 
waters producing good fish fauna, it would be rated as good." 

Dorris et al. (1963: 85) also reported seasonal differences in 
dissolved oxygen levels in their 1955 investigations on the Mississippi 
River near Quincy, Illinois (Mississippi River mile 325.0). They re- 
ported a mean winter dissolved oxygen of 11.2 mg/1 and a mean summer 
dissolved oxygen of 6.8 mg/1 (Dorris et al. , 1963: 85). 

Recent (1974) dissolved oxygen data for Pools 24, 25, and 26 were 
obtained from Colbert et al. (1975). These investigators also found 
seasonal fluctuations in dissolved oxygen concentrations. In a variety 
of aquatic habitats which included the main channel, side channels, 
dikes, and river border areas, Colbert et al. (1975: Table 6) reported 



132 



a July mean of 6.6 mg/1 during a high river stage and a September mean of 
9.3 mg/1 during an average river stage. They found that dissolved 
oxygen saturation values were generally lower in all habitats during 
July and complete oxygen saturation was observed only during September 
(Colbert et_ al . , 1975: 35). No dissolved oxygen concentrations during 
1974 fell below the minimum Illinois and Missouri stream standard of 
5 mg/1 (Colbert et al. , 1975: 35). 

From a comparison of available pre- and post-construction dissolved 
oxygen data, it appears that the nine-foot navigation system has had 
no measurable effect on this water parameter. 

Turbidity, Suspended Sediment, and Water Clarity . McKee and Wolf 
(1963: 290) stated that the turbidity of water is attributable to sus- 
pended and colloidal matter, the effect of which is to reduce clearness 
and diminish the penetration of light. Bellrose et al. (1977: C-42) 
reported that agricultural pollution (soil runoff) was probably the 
greatest factor contributing to high turbidity levels in the Illinois 
River. Other factors listed were resuspension of bottom sediments by 
barge traffic, bank erosion from boat-produced wakes and wind-produced 
waves, and feeding activities of fish (Bellrose et al., 1977: C-42). 
The greatest effect of high turbidity levels in freshwater systems is 
the restriction of sunlight needed for photosynthesis by aquatic plants. 
The effects of turbidity on aquatic plant production have been well 
documented (Martin and Uhler, 1939: 120; Low and Bellrose, 1944: 17; 
Chamberlain, 1948: 352; Robel, 1961: 437, and Bellrose et al. , 1977: 
C-43). 

Hooker (1897 in Galtsoff, 1924: 371) reported that suspended 
sediment (surface) levels in the period 1880-1881 in the upper Mis- 
sissippi River from Winona, Minnesota (Mississippi River mile 725.0) 
to Hannibal, Missouri (Mississippi River mile 309.0) ranged from 34 to 
165 ppm, with increasing levels downstream. Hooker found that at 
St. Louis (Mississippi River mile 180.0) the suspended sediment con- 
centration was 686 ppm, which he attributed to the influence of the 
Missouri River; in 1879, the Missouri River contained 2,418 ppm sediment 



133 



at its mouth near St. Charles, Missouri (Mississippi River mile 195.0) 
(Hooker, 1897, in Galtsoff, 1924: 371). The influence of the highly 
turbid waters of the Missouri River on the lower Mississippi River was 
also noted by Townsend (1915 in Galtsoff, 1924: 370); 



The amount of sediment in the lower Mississippi depends 
almost exclusively on the proportion of water from the 
Missouri. In comparison with the Missouri, the upper 
Mississippi is a clear stream and the amount of sediment 
carried by it is insignificant. 



Water clarity is influenced by factors other than suspended sedi- 
emnt, such as the quantity of plankton. However, Galtsoff (1924: 372) 
felt that in the Mississippi River, water transparency depended prin- 
cipally on the amount of sediment in suspension. He reported that 
the upper Mississippi in 1921 was "muddy" even during low water and 
progressively more turbid downstream (Galtsoff, 1924: 371). Water 
clarity readings (measured by a round white disk, 25 cm diameter) 
during the 1921 survey ranged from a maximum of 102 cm at the outlet 
of Lake Pepin (Mississippi River mile 763.5) to 22 cm at Fairport, 
Iowa (Mississippi River mile 463.0) (Galtsoff, 1924: 371). 

Platner (1946: 16) also reported an increase of turbidity in a 
downstream direction in the Mississippi River. His only comments on 
the methods he used were: "... turbidity was recorded in parts per 
million based on readings calculated from a previously standardized 
Fuller's earth curve" (1946: 16) and "The percentage of sedimentation 
was recorded in a 100 ml capacity mine-waste tube, one hour after 
collection of the sample" (1946: 16). He found average turbidity values 
during low water at 40 ppm in the upper reaches of the river, 300 
ppm in a middle section, and 1,880 ppm below the mouth of the Missouri 
River (Platner, 1946: 16). Both Galtsoff (1924: 371) and Platner 
(1946: 16) noted that turbidity levels increased with an increase in 
river water levels. Turbidity levels during high water averaged 40 
percent greater than during low water (Platner, 1946: 16). 

In 1955, Dorris et al. (1963) sampled several limnological parameters 



134 



of the Mississippi River near Quincy, Illinois (Mississippi River mile 
325.0). Light penetration was measured by using a Jackson turbidimeter 
and averaged 38 cm for the year (Dorris e_t _al . , 1963: 84). Dorris et al. 
(1963: 84) also found a relationship between stream discharge and light 
penetration. High stream discharge rates were accompanied by low light 
penetration and low photosynthesis. High turbidity appeared to be caused 
by silt loading, rather than by plankton, since photosynthetic oxygen 
production almost always decreased at the time of high turbidity 
(Dorris et al. , 1963: 84). 

Recent turbidity data for Pools 24, 25, and 26 were found in Dunham 
(1971: Table 10) and Colbert et al. (1975: Table 6). Dunham (1971: Table 
10) measured tailwater turbidities below Locks and Dams 12-26 in 1971. He 
found that water clarity (Secchi disk) during low water decreased down- 
stream from a high of 20 cm below Lock and Dam 12 to a low of 10 cm be- 
low Lock and Dam 26 (Dunham, 1971: Table 10). Colbert et al . (1975: 32) 
measured turbidity photometrically with a Hach Model DREL laboratory 
kit, using a Hach absorptometric method. Turbidity values for Pools 24, 
25, and 26 in 1974 were directly related to current velocity (Colbert et al, 
1975: 36), and mean values at the surface were 257.4 units during high 
water in July and 46.2 units during low water in September (Colbert et al. , 
1975: Table 6). Settleable solids, measured volumetrically with a 
1-liter Imhoff cone using standard methods, followed the same pattern 
(Colbert et al. , 1975: 22, Table 6). 

Regarding the quantity of erosion silt in the Mississippi River, 
Ellis (1931b: 5) wrote: 



The most outstanding factor producing changes in river 
conditions at present (1930) throughout the Mississippi system 
was found to be erosion silt. As a result of deforestation, 
current methods of tilling the land, and various improve- 
ments incident to commercial progress as road building, 
the amount of erosion silt which is being received by the 
various streams of the Mississippi system has been progressively 
greater during the past 10 years until it now presents perhaps 
the most acute fisheries problem in our inland rivers. 



135 



Nutrients (Ammonia-nitrogen, Nitrate-nitrogen, Nitrite-nitrogen, 
and Total Phosphorus) . An extensive literature search yielded very 
little information on pre-construction nutrient levels in the upper 
Mississippi River. Clarke (1908, in Galtsoff, 1921: 371) reported 
nitrate-nitrogen concentrations of 0.85 ppm at Minneapolis, Minnesota 
(Mississippi River mile 850) and 0.10 ppm at Memphis, Tennessee in 
1906-1907. In 1921, McHargue and Peter (1921, in Platner, 1946: 5) 
found that nitrate-nitrogen was absent in samples at Minneapolis, but 
occurred at Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Ammonia-nitrogen apparently 
occurred only in the Baton Rouge samples (McHargue and Peter, 1921, 
in Platner, 1946: 5). 



136 



Platner (1946: 74), in his 1944 water quality survey of the upper 
Mississippi River, found that total nitrogen values were less than 1.0 
ppm in midwinter, averaged 1.7 ppm during low water and 5.5 ppm in 
high water. The 1944 phosphate levels of the Mississippi River ranged 
from .05 to .22 ppm during midwinter, .20 to .35 ppm during high water, 
and .22 to .45 during low water (Platner, 1946: Figure 13). 

Colbert et al. (1975: 39) reported that 1974 nutrient concentrations 
in Pools 24, 25, and 26 were comparable to those found by Platner (1946) 
in 1944. Nutrient concentrations in 1974 were higher during a high 
stage than during an average stage (Colbert et al. , 1975: 38). This 
was also observed by Platner (1946: 74). Ammonia-nitrogen levels (main 
channel) in Pools 24, 25, and 26 in 1974 averaged 0.12 mg/1 during an 
average stage and 0.70 mg/1 at a high stage (Colbert et al. , 1974: D-3) . 
Total phosphorus levels the same year averaged 0.18 mg/1 and 1.2 mg/1 
during average and high stages, respectively (Colbert et al. , 1975: D-3). 
Colbert et al. (1975: 38) attributed the increase in nutrient concentra- 
tions during high water to the resuspension of nutrients from bottom 
sediments and to land runoff. 

Due to lack of early data, it was impossible to evaluate pre- and 
post-construction changes of nutrient concentrations in the upper Mis- 
sissippi River. 

Heavy Metals and Pesticides . The analytical methodology to measure 
trace materials in water was in its infancy in the period preceding 
construction of the nine-foot navigation system. Therefore, no data on 
heavy metals or pesticides were obtained for this period. 

A few trace elements (iron, manganese, zinc, and fluorine) were 
measured by Platner (1946). Recent (1974) heavy metal data for Pools 
24, 25, and 26 can be found in Colbert et al. (1975). 

In general, one would expect the concentration of toxic materials 
in sediments to increase in the downstream direction in each pool, due 
to the physical distribution of sediment according to particle size and 
weight. For the same reasons, one would also expect a lateral distribution, 
with higher concentrations in slackwater areas than in the main channel. 



137 



Small particles of clay and organic matter have both a greater affinity 
for toxicants than larger particles such as sand, and also a much 
greater surface area per unit weight. The finer particles settle out 
where the current velocity is reduced: above the dams and in areas 
lateral to the main channel, hence one would expect the concentration 
of toxicants in sediment to follow the same distribution. 

Illinois River 



We were able to find very little water quality data collected 
before 1938 on the lower 80 miles of the Illinois River. Most of the 
early water quality studies by the Illinois Natural History Survey 
and Illinois State Water Survey were directed toward measuring the 
degree and extent of pollution in the middle and upper reaches of 
the Illinois River. Richardson (1921b) states that by 1920, the 
bottom fauna in the river and bottomland lakes as far downstream 
as Browning (mile 97,0) had been affected by organic waste and low 
dissolved oxygen levels. His statement indicates that the lower 
river either was not affected, or affected to a lesser degree than the 
middle and upper reaches of the river. 

The section on benthos in the Illinois River described how the 
tubificid worms, fingernail clams, and chironomid larvae increased 
between 1915 and 1964. These results indicate that the organic loading 
of the lower river may have increased, while the dissolved oxygen 
levels had declined slightly. Figure 8 shows that a pronounced oxygen 
sag occurred in the LaGrange Pool, immediately upstream from the study 
reach. The water was reaerated as it flowed over the LaGrange Dam, 
and then a slight sag occurred in the lower 80 miles of the Illinois 
River. The minimum dissolved oxygen levels in the study reach in 1965-66 
were 2-3 mg/1 (Figure 8 ) — lower than the current Illinois standard of 
4.0 mg/1, and probably low enough to stress some types of aquatic organisms. 
Recent data indicate that dissolved oxygen levels in the backwaters and 
lakes have declined, probably due to the high oxygen demand exerted by 
the sediments, while the oxygen levels in the river have improved. Studies 
conducted in the summer of 1977 by the Illinois Natural History Survey 



138 



3 fc 

o o 



y o 

c 



4J u 






a co 
to 

60 
& • 



h m c 

O SO -H 

W C\ g 

CO r-i 



M 3 CU 

> U 

< T3 



rH 1-4 

3 V 



INdd(OQ) N39AX0 Q3A10SSIQ 



at river mile 99 (which is probably representative of conditions in 
the study area, although it is located upstream from the LaGrange Lock 
and Dam) showed that the minimum dissolved oxygen level in water 
coming out of a backwater through Panther Slough was few tenths of a 
ppm, while dissolved oxygen levels at the same time in the main 
channel were on the order of 5-6 ppm. 

The benthos section of this report showed that the numbers of 
oligochaete worms, midges, and perhaps fingernail clams declined be- 
tween 1964 and 1974-1975, possibly indicating a reduction in the 
organic load of the river and improvement in the dissolved oxygen 
levels. The increase in number of mayflies from 4 per square meter 
in 1964 to 172.2 per square meter in 1975 also indicates an improvement 
in dissolved oxygen levels. 

The disappearance of snails in the lower Illinois River between 1964 
and 1974 may indicate a toxicity problem, and pesticides were implicated 
in studies where caged snails rapidly accumulated dieldrin when placed 
in the Illinois River (see the benthos section) . The demise of vascular 
aquatic vegetation in the lower Illinois River in the late 1950' s 
may be attributable to increasing turbidity which reduces the penetra- 
tion of light needed for photosynthesis, or to a toxicity problem. 
Colbert et al. (1975: 42-43, Table D-II) found that iron concentrations 
in the water at all stations except one exceeded the 1.0 mg/1 Illinois 
standard, and mercury concentrations at most stations exceeded the 
0.0005 mg/1 Illinois standard. The only factor which differed between 
the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers within the study area was total 
phosphorus, which was highest in the Illinois River. Colbert et al. 
(1975: 46-47) reported that the sediments of the lower Illinois River 
contained higher concentrations of ammonia, phosphorus, and iron than 
sediment in the Mississippi River. Mean PCB and pesticide concentra- 
tions in the sediments of the side channels were comparable for both 
rivers. Sediment in the main channel of the Illinois River contained 
detectable pesticide concentrations, whereas the Mississippi River did 
not. Slightly higher PCB concentrations also occurred in the sediments 
of the main channel of the Illinois River. 



Sediment 

Sediment has many effects on aquatic ecosystems in the Mississippi 
and Illinois River valleys. Sediment can occur in an aquatic ecosystem 
in several ways. Suspended sediment is that particulate matter that 
is carried in the water column. Deposited sediment is that particulate 
matter that has dropped from the water column. Resuspended sediment is 
stirred up from the bottom by water currents, wave action, boat traffic, 
or by the rooting activities of fish, such as carp. Sedimentation is 
defined as the deposition of the solid particulate material by water. 

When sediment is suspended or resuspended in the water column it 
contributes to turbidity. In the case of the lower Illinois River val- 
ley, the sediments have formed a soft or false bottom that is readily 
resuspended. 

From Keokuk, Iowa south to Alton, Illinois, the bottom of the Mis- 
sissippi River is dominated by sand which is mixed with silt in some 
locations (Platner, 1946: Table 5). This type of bottom is less easily 
resuspended than the Illinois River bottom. 

The Mississippi has been historically described as carrying a large 
silt load (Saxon, 1927: 78; Galtsoff, 1923: 371). The Illinois River, 
on the contrary, was relatively clear. Barrows (1910: 4) described the 
original discharge of the Illinois River as relatively small, being less 
than the Rock River and a small fraction of the Mississippi. The Illinois 
flows in an unusually wide floodplain and drops sediment on its slug- 
gish edges resulting in the formation of natural lateral levees and bottomland 
lakes (Mills, Starrett, and Bellrose, 1966: 3). The Mississippi flows 
at a higher velocity but also forms natural levees, although these 
levees are somewhat smaller than those on the Illinois River (Rubey, 
1952: 123). 

Two major changes have occurred in the lower Illinois and Mississippi 
valleys. The first major change took place mainly in the first quarter 
of this century, when large tracts of bottomland were drained and leveed 
from the rivers. In the Illinois River valley, approximately half of 



141 



the bottomland acres were drained (Mills, Starrett, and Bellrose, 1966: 
5). The second major alteration was the implementation of the nine-foot 
channel. By comparing mean water levels before and after the 
nine-foot channel project at dams 24, 25, and 26, the increase in water 
levels was found to be approximately 9, 10, and 9 feet respectively. 

As a result of man's activities, the rate of sedimentation and the 
turbidity have increased since the 1900' s. The apparent main factor 
responsible for this increase has been the expansion of row crop produc- 
tion. Construction of the locks and dams and municipal sewage effluents 
have compounded this problem. These activities have changed the clarity 
of the river and the nature of the bottomland lakes in the Illinois and 
Mississippi Rivers. Detailed studies to determine what percent of 
sediment results from agricultural erosion and what percent from construc- 
tion of the dams have never been undertaken. 

An increase in the turbidity of the Illinois River can be demonstrated 
by comparing data collected by Kofoid in 1903 and the Illinois Natural 
History Survey in 1974 and 1976. Kofoid (1903: 179) used a white porcelain 
plate to determine that the majority of transparencies in the Havana, Illinois 
area were between 8 and 20 inches. He stated that during floods, the 
water was turbid; however, the water cleared following its decline. In 
1974, the majority of Secchi disk readings taken in the Alton Pool, 
Illinois River, were between 7 and 9 inches. Bottomland lakes located 
in the middle Illinois River valley were more turbid; the majority of 
readings collected by the authors in 1976 were between 4 and 7 inches. 

A three-fold increase in Jackson Turbidimeter Units (JTU's) taken 
under similar conditions between 1897 and 1964 occurred in the La Grange 
Pool, Illinois River (Mills, Starrett, and Bellrose, 1966: 7). A compari- 
son of JTU's taken at Lake Chautauqua in 1955 (Jackson and Starrett, 1959: 
13) with JTU's obtained in 1977 under analogous conditions indicates 
an almost two-fold increase. Although these data are from La Grange Pool, 
the increase in turbidity at Lake Chautauqua is indicative of the general 
change that occurred in the bottomland lakes of the Illinois River. 

There were few turbidity measurements in the Mississippi River. In 
July, 1921 Galtsoff (1923: 372) measured a transparency of 61 cm near 
Montrose, Iowa. The Illinois Natural History Survey recorded transparencies 



142 



of 27 and 40 cm in the same location in late June, 1974 and 1975. The scant 
data available indicate that turbidity has increased in the Mississippi 
River, although this increase is not as great as in the Illinois River. 

Several factors have been responsible for the increased sedimentation 
rate. The dramatic intensification in agrarian practices since the 
middle 1800 's has greatly increased soil pollution in the Illinois and 
Mississippi River valleys. Clearing of fencer ows and bottomland timber in 
addition to emphasis on row crop production have created serious erosion 
problems. In 1886 Illinois farmers planted nearly 6 million acres of 
row crops (Aldrich, 1965) , approximately 17 percent of the state. The 
number of acres increased to over 10 million by the early 1900' s (Aldrich, 
1965: 12) or 28% of the state planted in row crops. A slight increase to 
33.3% was calculated from the Illinois Cooperative Crop Reporting Service 
annual summary in 1945. A jump to 50.6 percent was calculated in 1974 
and 54.8 in 1976. When using 52 counties in the state which drain 
completely or partially into the Illinois River, a similar increase is 
found. In 1945 41.1 percent of these counties were planted in row crops. 
By 1974 this figure had jumped to 57.8 percent and increased by 3.7 per- 
cent in just two years to 61.5 percent in 1976. 

We have no data to illustrate this change on the Mississippi drainage 
system, but Barnickol and Starrett (1951: 274) indicate that soil pollution 
has long been associated with the Mississippi below the mouth of the Mis- 
souri, but it was not generally noted in the upper part of the river 
until after the development of intensive farming in the Middle West. The 
drainage of bottomland lakes and marshes and the channelization of tribu- 
taries have increased the amount of sediment entering the rivers. 

Sedimentation rates are influenced by several factors among which 
are water flow, seasonal variability of the flow, sediment load, charac- 
ter of the sediment, and geometry of the system. Although all of these 
factors play a role in sedimentation, there is a high correlation between 
sedimentation rates and water depth in the backwater lakes of the Illinois 
River. Deep water areas of these lakes show higher sedimentation 
rates than those with shallower waters. The constant reduction in depth as a 



143 



result of sedimentation must be taken into account if sedimentation 
rates are compared over a period of time. By graphing the rate of 
fill at each location against its original depth, the effect of changing 
depths is negated, allowing a direct comparison of sedimentation rates. 

Sedimentation studies made at Lake Meredosia reveal the importance 
of changing depths when comparing sedimentation rates over a large 
number of years. A direct comparison of gross average fill per year 
at Lake Meredosia for the periods 1903-1956 and 1956-1978 was .043 ft. /year and 
.042 ft. /year respectively. This would seem to indicate that the sedimentation 
rates are nearly equal. By plotting the rate of sedimentation against 
the depth (Figure 9) and comparing the location of the regression lines, 
an increase in the sedimentation rate can be seen. Although the sedi- 
ment load of the water has increased, unless the effect of changing 
depths is taken into account, the sedimentation rates cannot be directly 
compared over a long period of time. 

The streams that flow into the Illinois have a steeper gradient 
than does the Illinois in its central and lower reaches (Mills, Star- 
rett, and Bellrose, 1966: 5). As a result of its low gradient and slow 
current velocity, the Illinois River deposits silt in the bottomland 
lakes during high water. The effect of drainage has been to reduce 
the area in which silt can be deposited, thereby increasing the amount 
of silt in the river and remaining bottomland lakes. 

The construction of the navigation dams on the Illinois and Missis- 
sippi Rivers slowed the current, compounding this problem. Forbes- and 
Richardson (1920: xi, xli) reported that the Illinois River's usual 
rate of flow for ordinary stages varied from lh to lh miles per hour. 
As a result of higher dams associated with the nine-foot channel and 
reduced diversion from Lake Michigan, the current velocity is now only 
about 0.6 miles per hour at ordinary stages. 

Solomon et al. (1975: 67) indicate that on the Mississippi at low 
and intermediate river flows, pool levels are held above the natural 
level by the dams, resulting in decreased flow velocity. Carlander 
(1954: 21) also indicated the current in most of the Mississippi River 
from St. Paul, Minnesota to Alton, Illinois had been greatly reduced 

144 



Figure 9. The yearly rate of sedimentation at Meredosia Bay determined 
for two periods, 1903-1956 and 1956-1978. 




R 

1903-1956 .93 
1956-1978 ,45 



1 



2 3 4 5 6 7 

DEPTH OF WATER (FEET) 



i — I — i — I — r- 

9 10 11 12 13 



145 



because of the dams. This decrease in the Mississippi and Illinois 
Rivers' current velocity has reduced their silt-carrying capacity, 
increasing the siltation problem. 

Increased water levels created by the construction of the dams 
also increased sedimentation rates. This statement is supported 
by the fact that the sedimetation rate in Lake Meredosia increased 
as its depth became greater. This has been further illustrated for 
eight lakes in the middle Illinois valley (Bellrose et al., 1977: 
C-ll, C-15). The construction of the dams increased water levels at 
Clarksville, Missouri, Cap Au Gris, Missouri, and Grafton, Illinois ap- 
proximately 9, 10, and 9 feet, respectively. These water depths were 
greatest just above the dams and diminished as the distance upstream 
from the dams increased (Simons, 1975: 94). The increased water levels 
in the channel and backwater areas created by the construction of the 
dams, combined with a reduction in current velocity, increased the 
rate of sedimentation. 

Barge traffic, associated with the impoundment of the navigation 
channel, increases suspended sediments in two ways: (1) Movement of the 
barges and the associated towboat causes a strong current on the 
silt bottom, which resuspends the silt particles, thereby increasing 
turbidity. (2) Bank erosion and resuspension of silt in shallow areas 
result from the wake produced by a passing barge. Starrett (1971: 273) 
observed an increased in suspended sediments on the Illinois River r 



On November 18, 1964 in the Alton Pool at river mile 65.1, 
the turbidity just prior to the passing of two towboats 
was 108 units and within 6 minutes after the tows had passed, 
the turbidity was 320 units. Sixteen minutes later the 
turbidity had dropped to 240 units. 



Pools 24, 25, and 26 have complex networks of channels, pools, 
and backwater areas. Water is generally supplied to the backwater 
areas through runoff, and during high river stages, spillage occurs 
from the main channel to the backwater areas (Karaki and Van Hoften, 1974: 19) 



146 



Karaki and VanHoften (1974: 19) indicate that the sediment plume 
of towboats, shown in infrared photographs, spreads across the main 
channel and can be carried to backwater areas if there is a flow into 
these areas from the main stream. Another statement supporting lateral 
movement of resuspended sediments on the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers 
is a conclusion by Johnson (1976: 124): 



It was found that lateral movement of sediments resus- 
pended by tows and transported from the main channel to 
shoreward areas , including potentially productive side 
channel areas, does occur during normal pool conditions. 



Jackson turbidimeter readings of Lake Chautauqua, LaGrange Pool, 
taken in 1977, indicate that suspended sediments are transported into 
backwaters during high water (Table41 ). These findings indicate 
that turbidity was greatest at a break in the levee at the southwest 
shore and decreased gradually toward the middle of the lake and away 
from the levee. 

It is the authors' opinion that when the river is flowing into 
backwater lakes, passage of barge traffic will result in lateral transport 
of resuspended sediment into backwater lakes, resulting in an increased 
sedimentation rate. 

The single greatest physical effect of increased sedimentation in 
the Illinois and Mississippi River valleys has been the acceleration 
of filling in backwater areas. The Illinois State Water Survey has 
found that backwater areas such as Meredosia in pool 26 are filling at 
relatively rapid rates. Lake Meredosia in 72 years lost 46% of its 
original storage capacity. The Water Survey calculated that the expec- 
ted life of this lake is less than 100 years (Lee, Stall, and Butts, 
1976: 7). 

Sedimentation has adversely affected marsh and aquatic plants by 
creating a soft, false bottom and by filling shallow areas inhabited 
by these plants. 

Our conclusions regarding the amount and effect of sedimentation 
in the study area conflict substantially with those drawn by Simons et al. 



147 



Table 41 

Turbidity of Lake Chautauqua During High River Stages and 0-5 mph 
Wind on 10 May 1977 



Distance from River 
Levee in Yards 

At levee 

125 

230 

410 

660 

985 
1295 
1610 
1960 
2285 
2610 



Jackson 






Turbidimeter 


Depth c 


if Water 


Units 


in Feet and Inches 


170 




- 


126 




- 


100 


4' 


9V 


66 


5' 


3V 


59 


5' 


7V 


60 


6' 


2V 


67 


6' 


6" 


71 


7' 


8" 


72 


6' 


8" 


59 


6' 


7%" 


58 


6' 


4V' 



2810 (200 yards off 
east shore) 

2895 (115 yards off 
east shore) 



57 



42 



5' 8' 



148 



(1975: 93-96). The conclusions differ because: (1) Simons et al. 
studied the movement of sand only, and (2) they studied sedimentation 
in the main channel only, not backwater areas which are the most im- 
portant to fish and wildlife. 

In the Simons study, they limited sediment transport to sand 
transport capacity (Simons et al. , 1975: 26). They concluded that 
an increase of 3 percent occurred between 1929 and 1973 (Simons et al. , 
1975: 77). Our observations indicate that in backwater areas the 
deposition of silt rather than sand is the major constituent of 
sediment in the Mississippi and Illinois River valleys. Furthermore, 
turbidity of the water is the result of fine silt particles (Dorris, 
Copeland, and Laver, 1954: 84), whereas sand, which is a larger, heavier 
particle, is only suspended by fast-moving water. 

Simons' conclusion as to the amount of sedimentation was derived 
from riverbed elevation changes only in the deepest 1,000-foot sec- 
tion of the channel (Simons, 1975: 62). These areas are subject to 
currents caused by towboats. In our studies on Peoria Lake in the 
middle Illinois valley, there are areas where the river channel is 
now deeper than in 1903 and adjacent areas, 100 feet from the channel, 
have filled in dramatically. As one moves from the main channel to 
lateral backwaters, the current diminishes, and the silt load is dropped. 
The backwater areas, where the greatest amount of sedimentation oc- 
curs, are also the most important areas for fish and wildlife. In 
these areas submerged aquatic and marsh plants, which provide food and 
habitat for fish and wildlife, have been reduced to mere remnants of 
what they once were (see aquatic vegetation section; Bellrose et al. , 
1976: C-19-C-46). 

Simons' conclusion that "50 years from now the river scene in the 
study reach will be essentially as it is today" does not take into 
account these factors. Although the river channel may remain stable, 
the backwater areas are undergoing an accelerated rate of change. Suc- 
cession has been increased to such an extent that changes that would 
normally take thousands of years are being completed in less than 150 



149 



years. Lakes Depue, Chautauqua, and Meredosia will be completely 
filled within 100 years according to the Illinois State Water Survey 
(Lee, 1976: 6; Lee, Stall, and Butts, 1976: 7). Increased sedimentation, 
primarily from agricultural intensification of land use, and turbidity 
have been major factors responsible for degrading backwater areas in 
Pools 24, 25, and 26 on the Mississippi River and Pool 26 on the 
Illinois River. Impounding Pools 24 , 25, and 26 increased the water 
surface area, but in the ensuing years, sedimentation has filled in 
appreciable acreage that has returned to wooded vegetation. 



150 



Terrestrial Communities 

Waterfowl 

Pools 24, 25, and 26 are the most important navigation pools on 
the entire Mississippi River for the mallard, the most abundant duck 
in the Mississippi flyway. Pool 19 is the most important navigation 
pool for lesser scaups, and next to pool 8, also contains the largest 
concentration of canvasbacks in the Midwest. 

Private duck clubs abound laterally to Pools 24-26, and are es- 
pecially prevalent adjacent to Pool 26 in St. Charles County, Missouri. 
Extensive public shooting grounds occur in Pools 25 and 26, but only 
small areas are utilized for public hunting in Pool 24. Refuges have 
been established by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Pools 25 and 
26, and adjacent to Pool 24. 

Impounding the Mississippi River with navigation dams that created 
navigation Pools 24-26 generally enhanced waterfowl habitat by creating 
many thousands of acres of shallow water. The addition of refuges in 
the impoundments added greatly to the assets of the pools both for 
waterfowl occupancy and waterfowl hunting (Bellrose, 1954: 169). 

Bellrose et al. (1977: C46) indicated that the abundance of vari- 
ous natural food plants in the Illinois River valley was correlated 
to the amount of time spent in the valley by certain species of water- 
fowl. The pintail showed an increase in density as the abundance of 
moist soil and marsh food plants increased. The wigeon's use of the 
valley correlated with increased aquatic plant production. Green-winged 
teal abundance increased as the abundance of all waterfowl food plants 
increased. 

Moist soil plants currently constitute the majority of natural 
waterfowl foods in the project area. They volunteer on exposed mud 
flats during the summer and must be inundated by 0.5 to 1.5 feet of 
water in the fall to enable waterfowl to feed upon the seeds produced. 
Moist soil plants are especially sensitive to pool levels early in 
growth when inundation will drown them. Many of the duck clubs, federal 



151 



and state refuges have built low levees adjacent to the pools in which 
water levels can be artifically controlled. These areas are not affected 
by manipulation of pool levels unless the low levees are topped. 

In non-leveed areas, the manipulation of pool levels, particularly 
on Pools 25 and 26, has an important bearing on their value for waterfowl. 
Levels that eliminate or reduce the growth of moist soil plants in mid- 
summer or do not flood them in the fall, reduce the use of these pools by 
waterfowl. Pool fluctuations resulting from floods are understandably 
beyond the control of pool management. However, other changes in pool 
levels appear to be within the ability of management to control. 

Since 1939 the Army Corps of Engineers has manipulated water levels 
in the study area to maintain a nine-foot navigation channel. This mani- 
pulation resulted for the most part in stabilizing low water levels, which 
benefited waterfowl populations. However, when the water levels are 
dropped in the fall as a result of pool operations, moist soil and (under 
extreme drawdowns) submerged aquatic plants are left stranded on mud 
flats. This makes these food plants inaccessible to waterfowl. Narra- 
tive reports from the Calhoun and Batchtown divisions of Mark Twain 
National Wildlife Refuge indicate that drawdowns occurred during the 
summers of 1952, 1953, 1956, and 1958 at the Calhoun unit (Pool 26); and 
1951, 1954, 1961, and 1972 at the Batchtown unit (Pool 25). Moreover, 
during the fall of 1956 and 1958 at the Calhoun unit and 1951 and 1961 at 
the Batchtown unit, drawdowns ranged from 3 feet to over 5 feet making it 
difficult or impossible for hunters to reach duck blinds. Waterfowl data 
for the 1950' s were not complete but the effect of fall drawdown on water- 
fowl can be seen in Figure 10. The pintail and wigeon show a decline 
during the fall drawdowns of 1961 and 1972 on Pool 25. Narrative reports 
from the Calhoun and Batchtown units indicate that during the fall 
drawdowns of the 1950' s, duck use of the refuges was reduced. 

Increased sedimentation and concomitant turbidity have had a detri- 
mental effect on waterfowl populations. As discussed previously in the 
wetland plant section, by 1970 increased sedimentation and turbidity 
resulted in a great reduction in submerged aquatic plants in the 
Calhoun Refuge. With this loss of plants, the wigeon and green-wing 
teal abundance plummeted on Pool 26 of the Illinois River. Figure 11 



152 



Figure 10. 







WIGEON AND PINTAIL DAYS OF USE ON POOL 25 








MISSISSIPPI RIVER 










WIGEOM 










PINTAIL 




90CH 








CD 


80O 
700- 






/ \ l\ 

i \ A 


X 

CO 

>- 


600- 
500- 






CD 

LU 
CO 


400- 
300- 
200- 
100- 


A 




i 




V \/\/ / 




i i 

60 1 62 


I'll 

1 64 1 66 


1 ' 1 ' 1 ' 1 ' 1 ' 1 

1 68 I 70 1 72 1 74 1 76 I 



1959 61 63 65 67 69 71 73 75 

YEARS 



153 



Figure 11. 





800-1 


r^o 


700- 


CD 




r— 1 


600- 


X 




OO 


snn - 


>- 






400- 


LU 
OO 


300- 


zd 




i 


200- 



100 



WIGE0N AND PINTAIL DAYS OF USE 

ILLINOIS RIVER 



POOL 26 



WIGEON 



PINTAIL 




1958 ' 60 i 62 I 64 ' 66 
59 61 63 65 67 



69 7 ° 71 72 73 ^ 75 76 77 



YEARS 



154 



indicates that green-wing teal duck-days dropped from a high of 286,000 
duck-days in 1963 to a low of 12,000 duck-days in 1970 while the 
wigeon fell gradually from a high 713,000 duck-days in 1964 to 43,000 
in 1970. A slight increase in use has occurred during the past two 
years . 

Lesser scaups have utilized Pools 25 and 26 more extensively than 
Pool 24. Scaup days of use (Figures 12, 13, & 14} have shown a downward trend 
throughout the period 1959-^-1977 . The reason for this decline is not 
fully understood, but in the Illinois valley a decrease in food sup- 
plies resulted in a drastic decline in scaup abundance (Mills et al. , 
1966: 18). Anderson (1959: 317) found that lesser scaup fed on plant 
meterial 10 percent of the time in the upper Illinois River and in 
the Mississippi River above Pools 24, 25, and 26. The fingernail clam, 
a major food source of the lesser scaup, was found in greater abun- 
dance in these reaches of the two rivers than in the project area. 
Therefore, aquatic plants are probably more important to the lesser 
scaup diet in Pools 24, 25, and 26. The decrease of aquatic plants in 
the late 1960 's would adversely affect the lesser scaup utilization 
of the project area. 

The mallard has been the principal species benefited by the pool 
impoundments and refuges. Mallard use of Pools 24, 25, and 26 has 
been increasing in recent years (Figure 15). Although mallards are able to obtain 
a large share of their food from waste corn left in the fields after 
hawest, the increased water acreage is valuable as resting sites. The 
loss of aquatic plants affected mallards less than other species; they 
feed in shallow water primarily on seeds of moist soil plants. Federal 
and state agencies as well as numerous private duck clubs have de- 
veloped low leveed areas for the development of moist soil waterfowl 
foods on areas adjacent to Pools 24-26. The presence of managed 
waterfowl areas lateral to the project area has increased mallard use 
in the project area. 

The wood duck is the primary breeding duck in the project ares. 
Natural cavities found in mature timber are used by the wood duck 
as nesting cavities. The clearing of extensive tracts of mature bot- 
tomland forest prior to impoundment reduced the number of natural 
cavities available for nesting. However, the increase in water levels 

155 



Figure 12. 

LESSER SCAUP AND GREEN-WINGED TEAL DAYS OF USE 

MISSISSIPPI RIVER 

LESSER SCAUP 

GREEN-WINGED TEAL 



POOL 24 




1 < r . ' 60 ! cl 64 I 66 I 68 I 70 

59 61 63 65 67 69 71 73 75 

YEARS 



156 



Figure 13 5 



LESSER SCAUP AND GREEN-WINGED TEAL DAYS OF USE ON POOL 25 




T 

60 ' 62 ' 64 ' 66 
1959 61 63 65 67 



r 

70 ' 72 ' 74 ' 76 
69 71 73 75 77 



YEARS 



157 



Figure 14. 

LESSER SCAUP AND GREEN-WINGED TEAL DAYS OF USE ON POOL 26 

ILLINOIS RIVER 



LESSER SCAUP 




1958' 60 I 62 I 64 I 66 ' 68 I 70 ' 72 I 74 ! 76 ! 
59 61 63 65 67 69 71 73 75 77 



YEARS 



158 



Figure 15. 



MALLARD DAYS OF USE ON POOL 24 

MISSISSIPPI RIVER 




MALLARD DAYS OF USE ON POOL 25 

MISSISSIPPI RIVER 




59 



I ' I i I ' I ' I ' I ' I ' I ' I ' 

1 61 ' 63 ' 65 ' 67 ' 69 ' 71 ' 73 ' 75 ' 77 

1958 60 62 W 66 63 70 72 74 76 

YEARS 



159 



as a result of the nine-foot channel project increased backwater areas 
and hence waterfowl brood habitat. Backwater areas initially expanded 
submerged aquatic and marsh acreage which form excellent brood habitat. 
Increased sedimentation and turbidity have decreased the value of brood 
habitat in the backwater areas by reducing the submerged aquatic and marsh 
vegetation. Increased effectiveness of management practices has 
helped keep this duck plentiful even though its habitat has been degraded. 

Canada, blue, and snow geese use-days have increased in recent 
years. The Illinois River portion of Pool 26 is utilized to a greater 
extent than the Mississippi River sections. The reason for this in- 
crease is twofold: (1) a large increase in the continental population 
of Canada geese (Bellrose, 1976: 142), and (2) increased management 
practices in the study area by state, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
and private duck clubs. 

In conclusion, the nine-foot navigation project initially bene- 
fited waterfowl populations. Increased backwaters provided shallow 
areas which supported both marsh and submerged aquatic plant growth. 
These areas provide additional feeding, breeding, and loafing areas 
for waterfowl. However, as a result of water fluctuations in Pools 
25 and 26, waterfowl feeding areas were degraded during several years. 
The nine-foot channel project has also been a factor which has led to 
increased sedimentation and turbidity in the Illinois and Mississippi 
valleys. Increased sedimentation has also occurred as a result of 
increased erosion from agricultural lands in the watershed. 

Increased sedimentation and turbidity have led to the eventual loss 
of submerged aquatic plants in most of the project area. This loss of 
plants has been responsible for declining numbers of wigeon, green-wing 
teal, and lesser scaup in the project area. In addition increased 
sedimentation has filled shallow areas created by the project which 
once supported marsh plants, destroying habitat. On the other hand 
sedimentation has also created more mud flats which produce moist- 
soil plants if the proper water level manipulation occurs. 



160 



Bald Eagle 

Pools 24, 25, and 26 form one of the more important wintering 
grounds for the bald eagle in the United States. Eagles funnel into 
the upper Mississippi River from extensive breeding grounds embracing 
Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Ontario, Manitoba, and the Northwest 
Territories. 

As ice covers the navigation pools in the upper reaches of the 
Mississippi River, increasing numbers of eagles move downstream to the 
lower pools. Because of the variability in seasonal ice cover in the 
navigation pools of the upper river, the numbers found in the project 
area fluctuate greatly during the fall and winter (Tables 42, 43, 44, & 45). 

Pools 24, 25, and 26 are the southern terminus for the large con- 
centration of bald eagles wintering on the Mississippi River. When 
these pools freeze completely over, the eagles are forced to disperse 
to less satisfactory feeding grounds. 

The nine-foot channel project has had both a beneficial and a detri- 
mental effect upon wintering eagles. With the navigation dams, the 
tailwaters remain unfrozen for longer periods of time than previously. 
It is there that the eagles concentrate to catch fish during severe 
weather in midwinter. However, the lower parts of the pools freeze 
over earlier than prior to the project, because of the reduction in 
channel velocity, thereby restricting the eagles' feeding area early in 
the winter. 

Overall, the advantages the eagles gain in obtaining fish from -the 
open tailwaters in midwinter probably outweigh the early winter loss of 
more extensive feeding grounds caused by the navigation project. 

Herons and Their Allies 

The family Ardeidae is represented in Pools 24, 25, and 26 by the 
great blue heron, common egret, black-crowned night heron, green heron, 
cattle egret, American bittern, and least bittern. These are wading 
birds that feed on fish, frogs, crayfish, and other invertebrates. All, 
except the green heron and bitterns, breed in colonies which sometimes 
number 100 and more nests. 



161 



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162 





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163 



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165 



Table 46 shows the location and the number of great blue hercn 
and common egret nests in colonies within the project area. Colonies 
were most numerous and nests were most abundant in 1962. Thereafter, 
there was a general decline through the 1960 's and 1970's; cursory ob- 
servation indicates that the number of nesting common egrets and great 
blue herons greatly decreased during the first half of the 1970 's. 

Graber (197 6: 2) also documented a similar decline in the number 
of breeding herons and egrets on the Mississippi River between St. Louis 
and Cairo. He attributed the decline there to two factors: (1) dis- 
turbance of nesting colonies by logging and "development", and (2) de- 
terioration in their food-gathering ability stemming from increases in 
turbidity and sedimentation. 

In our judgment the nine-foot waterway initially produced an in- 
crease in breeding egrets and herons by enhancing their feeding grounds. 
Their food supply and feeding areas were increased by the expansion in 
water surface area, particularly in the lower one-third of each naviga- 
tion pool. 

The clearing of bottomland forests in the impoundment area resulted 
in losses in potential nest sites, but it would seem that sufficient 
bottomland hardwoods remain to provide adequate nest sites. The in- 
creased turbidity and sedimentation of backwater areas in recent 
years appears to be an important factor in the recent catastrophic 
decline in the abundance of herons and egrets. 

Cormorants 



The double-crested cormorant was a common migratory visitor and 
bred to a limited extent in the Mississippi valley. The cormorant was 
listed as occurring in occasional flocks in August 1888 near Quincy, 
Illinois (Garman, 1896: 131). Smith (1911: 17) recorded several cormorants 
nesting on Clear Lake near Havana, Illinois. Praeger (1925: 570) re- 
ported that in 1890 the double-crested cormorant was abundant in April 
and October near Keokuk, Iowa on the Mississippi River. Mills, Star- 
rett, and Bellrose (1966: 21) stated that as many as 15,000 cormorants 
were in the lower Illinois valley on October 16, 1950. 



Table ^6 

Location and Size of Common Egret and Great 31ue Heron Nesting Colonies 
in Pools 24, 25, and 26 



_1958 1962 1964 1967 1975 1976 
Location 



Lake Meredosia 90 500 150 115 
Nutwood 30 10 

Grafton 45 150 72 70 ? ? ? 



Gilead (5 miles 
north) 



55 100 100 50 25 200 160 



Clarksville 250 110 180 120 115 30 35 80 ? ? ? 
Golden Eagle 24 ? ? ? 



Blackburn Island 

(north of Louisiana, 100 110 ? ? ? 

Missouri) 



Total 250 300 280 870 165 301 335 535 30 10 



CE = Common Egret. 

GBH = Great Blue Heron. 



167 



A rapid decline in cormorant numbers has occurred since 1950. By 
1965 only 22 cormorants were observed on an aerial inventory of water 
birds in the Illinois River valley. Between 1965 and 1972 cormorants 
were only observed once during the fall waterfowl census flight of 
the Illinois and Mississippi River valleys made by the Illinois Natural 
History Survey. In recent years a gradual increase in cormorant num- 
bers has occurred in Pools 24, 25, and 26 of the Mississippi River 
(Table 47). 

The cause for the dramatic decline in cormorant numbers is not known 
at this time. However, the implementation of the nine-foot channel 
appears to have had little effect on the cormorant. 

Shorebirds and Related Species 

At times large numbers of shorebirds, gulls, and terns, members 
of the order Charadriif ormes , occur within Pools 24-26. Shorebirds 
are most abundant from mid-summer through early fall when mud flats 
are exposed by receding water. This condition is prevalent only in 
those summers that river flows are minimal. 

Three areas within the project area are noted for shorebird con- 
centrations: (1) Lake Meredosia on the Illinois River at the upper 
end of Pool 26, (2) Calhoun Refuge, a short distance above the mouth of 
the Illinois River, and (3) Batchtown area, at the lower end of Pool 
25. 

A list of the occurrence of shorebirds and gulls on the three areas 
is shown in Table 48. The most abundant sandpipers are the following: 
pectoral, least, semipalmated, and lesser yellowlegs. Other important 
shorebirds are killdeer, woodcock, and common snipe. 

Gulls are many times more abundant than terns, which occur late 
in the spring and early in the fall. On the other hand, gulls are most 
numerous from mid-fall through mid-spring. During this period many 
thousands occur within the project area. Ring-billed gulls composed 
the bulk of the birds, followed by herring gulls. 

Increased sedimentation has resulted in the filling of marshy areas 
creating shallows which are exposed during the low water in summer and fall. 



168 



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IN N CS N a>i CN CN CN CM 



O 0) 

> 

CO -H 

*J Pi 



169 



Table 48 
Shorebirds and Related Species 







Meredosia 


Calhoun 


Batchtown 


American Avocet 




a 

X 




American Golden Plover 




X 




Black-Bellied Plover 


X 






Semipalmated Plover 


Jb 


X 




Killdeer 


* 


* 


Buff-Breasted Sandpiper 


X 






Solitary Sandpiper 


X 






Spotted Sandpiper 


X 


X 


X 


Willet 




X 




Greater Yellowlegs 


* 


X 


X 


Lesser Yellowlegs 


* 


X 


X 


Stilt Sandpiper 


* 


X 


X 


Short-Billed Dowitcher 


X 


X 




Long-Billed Dowitcher 




X 


X 


Pectoral Sandpiper 


* 


* 


X 


Dunlin 




X 


X 


Sanderling 


X 






Least Sandpiper 


* 


X 




Semipalmated Sandpiper 


* 


X 


X 


Western Sandpiper 




X 




Wilson's Phalarope 


X 


X 


X 


American Woodcock 


X 


* 


* 


Common Snipe 


X 


* 


* 


Herring Gull 


* 


* 


* 


Ring-Billed Gull 


X 


* 


* 


Franklin ' s Gull 




X 




Common Tern 




X 


X 


Forster's Tern 




X 


X 


Caspian Tern 




X 


X 


Black Tern 


* 


X 


X 



x = present. 

* = 1,000 or more use days. 



In the years that pool levels recede from mid-summer on, the navigation 
project is beneficial to shorebirds. Under these conditions, more mud 
flats are available than during the pre-project years. 

Gulls and terns also benefited from the nine-foot channel project. 
More surface water was created, increasing their food source, minnows 
and other fishes. 

Other Game Species 

Several other game species are found in the study area. The bob- 
white quail, ringneck pheasant, mourning dove and wild turkey are the 
four major game birds found in the study area. These species dwell in 
open forests, hedgerows, and cropland (Robbins et al. , 1966: 82, 90, 
154). Inundation or logging of bottomlands in conjunction with the 
nine-foot channel had a minimal effect on these habitats and subse- 
quently these birds. 

The American woodcock and common snipe are found in moist wood- 
lands and along marshes and river banks (Robbins et al. , 1966: 126). 
The moist bottomlands of Pools 24, 25, and 26 supply feeding habitat 
for migrating woodcock and snipe. A small number of breeding wood- 
cock in Illinois and Missouri also exploit this habitat. Inundation 
of bottomland as a result of the nine-foot channel probably destroyed 
feeding sites used by the woodcock and snipe. 

The common gallinule, sora, and Virginia rail breed on and migrate 
through the study area' (Sanderson, 1977: 112, 60, 49). These birds 
breed and feed in marsh areas (Sanderson, 1976: 110, 58, 46). The nine- 
foot channel initially created additional marsh areas, providing more 
habitat for these birds. Increased sedimentation, attributed primarily to 
agricultural pollution coupled with the dams' slowing the current and 
deepening the water, has filled marsh areas, reducing the initial 
benefit to these species. 
Other Avifauna 

Song birds ( Passer if ormes ) are the most abundant of all birds. 
Hundreds of thousands of individuals embracing over 100 species migrate 
through the project area. About 50 species remain to breed. Quantitative 



data on these birds are not available, but general conclusions can 
be drawn. 

Most of the passerine species that frequent the project area are 
associated with the bottomland forest. Extensive clearing of the bottom- 
land forest in preparation for pool impoundment was destructive of 
habitats used by song birds both in migration and for breeding. Breeding 
song birds most affected were: great crested flycatcher, wood pewee, 
tree swallow, black-capped chickadee, tufted timouse, white-breasted 
nuthatch, house wren, Bewick's wren, Carolina wren, wood thrush, red- 
eyed vireo, warbling vireo, prothonotary warbler, yellow-throat, and 
American redstart. 

Other birds, closely allied to Passerif ormes, that were adversely 
affect by clearing bottomland timber are the following woodpeckers: 
pileated, hairy, downy, red-bellied, and red-headed. 

The only area that wasn't cleared was Calhoun Point in Pool 26. 
A cooperative agreement between the Army Corps of Engineers, Illinois 
Natural History Survey, and National Park Service allowed this area to 
be flooded. Inundation killed mature timber, temporarily creating additional 
habitat for woodpeckers and cavity-nesting birds . The maj or species of birds 
that were affected are the red-bellied, red-headed, downy, hairy, 
and pileated woodpeckers; the yellow-shafted flicker; tree swallow; 
and prothonotary warbler (Yeager, 1949: 62). For the song birds and 
woodpeckers there was no mitigation for the extensive bottomland 
forests that were cleared. 

Muskrats 



The implementation of the nine-foot channel benefited muskrat 
populations on Pools 24, 25, and 26 of the Illinois and Mississippi 
Rivers. Muskrats depend on marsh vegetation for both feeding and 
house construction. The implementation of Pools 26 and 25 in 1938 
created 600 acres of shallow water at Calhoun Point, Illinois and 
approximately 1,000 acres at Batchtown, Illinois. Much of this 
acreage supported marsh vegetation creating habitat for muskrats. 
The importance of these water areas is reflected by partial counts of 



of trappers 1 catches for Calhoun Point taken from Yeager and Rennels 
(1943: 49). Harvested muskrats numbered 50 to 75 during the 1938-39 
trapping season and jumped to 225 during the 1939-40 season. Other 
marsh habitat created by the nine-foot channel would have had similar 
beneficial effects on muskrat populations. 

Increased sedimentation caused by intensified agricultural tillage, 
coupled with decreased water velocity and increased water levels as 
a result of the navigation dams, have filled in shallow marsh areas. 
The plants that occupied these areas, mainly river bulrush and smart- 
weeds, are used by muskrats to build houses (Brown and Yeager , 1943: 456). As 
a result of sedimentation, many of the narsh plants which were re- 
sponsible for the increase of muskrat populations had been replaced by 
moist soil species. Narrative reports for the Mark Twain National 
Wildlife Refuge (Calhoun and Batchtown units) indicate that by 1960 
muskrats had gradually changed from building houses to using bank dens. 
The initial benefit derived from the nine-foot channel project has 
retrogressed as a result of sedimentation. 

Information obtained from narrative reports also indicates that 
extreme fluctuations as a result of manipulation of pool levels have 
a detrimental effect on muskrat populations. Keenlyne (1974: 20), 
Bellrose (1943: 175), and Steele (1946: 20) have found that extreme 
fluctuations adversely affect muskrat populations in the upper Missis- 
sippi and Illinois Rivers. Steele (1946: 20) indicated a drawdown of 
six or more inches following a freeze-up after muskrats had established 
winter quarters and gathered emergency food supplies would force ma'ny 
of the animals to abandon their lodges during mid-winter due to inac- 
cessibility of food in the vicinity of their lodge. The dams could be 
beneficial for muskrats by stabilizing water levels. However, draw- 
downs, especially in Pool 25 in 1951, 1954, 1955, and 1961, have been 
deleterious to muskrats. 

Muskrat populations at the Calhoun and Batchtown units of Mark 
Twain National Wildlife Refuge increased initially but declined in the 
middle 1940' s as a result of pool level manipulation. The population 
then began to increase in the 1950' s until the middle 1960's except 



173 



during periods of extreme water fluctuations. They remained stable 
until the severe floods of 1969 and 1970 reduced their numbers. Musk- 
rat populations made a minor recovery following the floods and have 
remained stable. The nine-foot channel project initially benefited 
muskrats; however, due to sedimentation and subsequent destruction of 
aquatic and marsh plants, much of the early benefits have been lost. 

Beaver 

The beaver was once common along rivers and streams in both Illinois 
and Missouri until the 1800' s. Their numbers gradually decreased as a 
result of over trapping and destruction of habitat. Only a few colonies 
remained in Missouri in 1895 (Schwartz, 1959: 165). By the late 1800' s 
or early 1900' s beaver were exterminated in Illinois (Hoffmeister and 
Mohr, 1972: 156). The Illinois Department of Conservation reintroduced 
beavers in Jersey County (Illinois River Pool 26) in 1936. Several other 
reintroductions were made in southern Illinois from 1935-1938 (Mohr, 
1943: 533). The repppulation of the Missouri River and its tributaries 
in north Missouri was the result of colonization by either r emn ants of 
the original population or migrants from farther upstream (Schwartz, 1959: 
165) . As a result of these reintroductions and movements from ad- 
jacent areas, the beaver is now a common mammal of Pools 24, 25, and 
26 on the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. 

Perusal of narrative reports written by management personnel of the 
Mark Twain Natioanl Refuge system, Calhoun and Batchtown units (Pools 
26 and 25) indicate that beaver populations have steadily increased from 
1949 until the mid-1960 's. The populations have remained static from 
the mid-1960 's to the present time. 

Two possible factors responsible for the increase in beaver popu- 
lations would be low pelt prices and increased sedimentation (Table 49 ). 
Since the repopulation of beaver in the Illinois and Mississippi River 
valleys, the price of beaver pelts has been low. This has resulted in 
little trapping pressure, allowing the beaver population to grow. In- 
creased sedimentation, which has been a result of agricultural erosion 
and implementation of the nine-foot channel, may have been beneficial 



174 



Table 49 



Fur Harvest and Average Pelt Prices for the State of Missouri 
and the Northeast Portion of Missouri 



















Raecoon 


Fur -Harvest" 


Muskrat Fur Harvest 








Ave. 






Ave. 




Missouri 


N.E.Mo. 


Price 


Missouri 


N.E.Mo. 


Price 


1934-35 


15,644 




$1.80 


67,058 




$ 0.80 


1940-41 


11,000 




2.15 


120,000 




1.30 


1941 


13,517 




3.00 


85,464 




1.15 


1942 


14,547 




3.10 


104,872 




1.70 


1943 


27,598 




4.40 


182,846 




1.90 


1944 


38,106 




2.16 


173,347 




1.80 


1945 


53,347 


13,810 


2.50 


212,269 


41,389 


2.00 


1946 


77,564 


20,504 


1.50 


217,847 


42,113 


1.50 


1947 


71,804 


17,932 


1.00 


118,670 


15,274 


2.30 


1948 


79,793 


20,697 


1.00 


76,034 


9,237 


1.75 


1949 


83,007 


19,787 


0.90 


115,861 


13,224 


1.25 


1950 


94,854 


23,609 


1.80 


139,197 


11,673 


1.85 


1951 


100,586 


25,368 


1.70 


111,542 


12,177 


1.55 


1952 


120,803 


31,251 


1.00 


120,435 


15,264 


1.10 


1953 


108,641 


28,127 


1.00 


63,455 


8,812 


0.90 


1954 


104,828 


30,829 


1.00 


43,116 


6,053 


1.00 


1955 


121,906 


34,464 


1.40 


38,036 


4,897 


1.20 


1956 


122,991 


29,442 


1.05 


67,139 


11,495 


0.92 


1957 


112,284 


28,432 


0.85 


46,805 


7,986 


0.70 


1958 


77,963 


19,691 


0.65 


53,182 


7,592 


0.60 


1959 


135,870 


35,481 


1.50 


119,766 


18,111 


0.75 


1960 


141,106 


34,076 


1.45 


86,282 


12,252 


0.65 


1961 


137,779 


31,582 


1.60 


65,431 


11,589 


0.67 


1962 


201,308 


46,911 


1.95 


119,754 


25,815 


0.90 


1963 


132,242 


29,182 


1.15 


101,883 


24,078 


1.15 


1964 


138,720 


33,033 


1.00 


90,311 


26,500 


1.02 


1965 


155,147 


37,811 


1.70 


128,256 


40,064 


1.40 


1966 


140,836 


33,873 


1.60 


130,026 


36,619 


0.91 


1967 


108,604 


24,831 


1.75 


63,657 


15,411 


0.75 


1968 


152,547 


34,162 


3.87 


64,209 


14,013 


0.91 


1969 


203,665 


44,976 


2.55 


105,425 


25,691 


1.10 


1970 


120,796 


28,015 


1.12 


71,911 


19,998 


0.92 


1971 


173,335 


39,755 


2.60 


92,993 


23,154 


1.30 


1972 


194,429 


43,760 


6.65 


69,012 


16,289 


2.05 


1973 


234,233 


48,279 


7.45 


58,341 


12,436 


2.15 


1974 


255,910 


58,738 


7.35 


94,009 


27,891 


2.40 


1975 


276,524 


59,670 


13.90 


89,727 


22,289 


3.00 


1976 


247,671 


52,810 


17.10 


82,708 


I 7 , 423 


4.10 



Sheet 1 of 2 



175 



Table 49 (concluded) 





Beaver 


Fur Harvest 


Mink 


Fur 


Harvest 








Ave. 








Ave. 




Missouri 


N.E.Mo. 


Price 


Missouri 


. N 


.E.Mo, 


. Price 


1934-35 








11,598 






$ 2.10 


1940-41 








13,626 






5.60 


1941 








7,888 






6.80 


1942 








6,637 






5.60 


1943 








10,436 






10.00 


1944 








11,156 






10.50 


1945 


25 a 




27.06 


14,144 


3 


,428 


25.50 


1946 


27 a 


8 


18.00 


22,658 


6 


,041 


14.00 


1947 


43 a 




18.70 


19,104 


4 


,388 


26.00 


1948 


32 a 




16.29 


closed season 


14.00 


1949 


166 a 


11 


10.43 


16,110 


2 


,783 


15.00 


1950 


247 a 


20 


10.00 


19,946 


2 


,968 


22.00 


1951 


197 a 


8 


9.92 


15,987 


1 


,923 


16.00 


1952 


485 a 


106 


6.06 


21,359 


2 


,151 


15.00 


1953 


1,893 


336 


5.00 


15,552 


1 


,505 


14.00 


1954 


2,333 


447 


5.25 


11,060 


1 


,243 


18.00 


1955 


3,132 


580 


5.80 


8,120 




779 


17.00 


1956 


3,927 


829 


3.00 


8,682 




974 


14.00 


1957 


2,177 


492 


3.50 


7,052 




720 


10.50 


1958 


1,950 


510 


3.60 


8,210 




605 


12.00 


1959 


3,864 


952 


3.95 


14,829 


1 


,409 


14.00 


1960 


5,091 


1,084 


4.30 


10,014 




769 


10.30 


1961 


3,268 


889 


5.00 


7,655 




605 


8.50 


1962 


6,437 


1,959 


4.70 


11,929 


1 


,154 


10.60 


1963 


6,068 


1,655 


5.60 


10,126 




922 


10.30 


1964 


4,187 


1,109 


5.13 


7,773 




809 


7.90 


1965 


4,190 


1,330 


5.33 


7,126 




877 


7.00 


1966 


5,607 


1,607 


6.40 


7,029 




845 


6.30 


1967 


2,989 


675 


7.85 


3,749 




411 


6.00 


1968 


2,567 


359 


8.15 


5,122 




453 


8.42 


1969 


3,771 


504 


7.00 


6,949 




628 


6.15 


1970 


2,257 


197 


4.65 


4,202 




440 


3.95 


1971 


2,938 


303 


5.35 


5,433 




741 


5.30 


1972 


3,275 


455 


9.35 


5,437 




676 


11.10 


1973 


2,098 


182 


8.20 


5,198 




380 


11.05 


1974 


3,246 


526 


5.75 


6,622 




619 


6.45 


1975 


2,320 


349 


4.80 


5,863 




641 


7.70 


1976 


5,888 


721 


8.30 


6,875 




505 


14.10 



damage permits only. 



Sheet 2 of 2 



176 



to the beaver. Mud flats created through sedimentation have been 
pioneered by black willow, cottonwood, and silver maple trees, which 
are preferred foods of the beaver. 

Probably the 9-foot channel project had little effect on potential 
beaver habitat. It was both destructive and beneficial, depending upon 
the amount of flooding: too much was destructive of beaver habitat, 
moderate inundation was beneficial. 

Raccoon 

Raccoons are present throughout Illinois and Missouri with the 
highest densities found in extensively wooded bottomland areas. Bot- 
tomland forests of the Illinois and Mississippi River valleys provide 
excellent habitat for the raccoon with number reaching 100 animals per 
square mile under favorable conditions (personal communication, Glen 
Sanderson, wildlife biologist, Illinois Natural History Survey). Ma- 
turity of bottomland forest and a plentiful water supply improve the 
quality of habitat. 

Trapping studies have indicated that raccoon populations decreased 
in Illinois during the 1930' s (Brown and Yeager, 1943: 463). During 
1938-39, Brown and Yeager reported a density of 5 raccoons per square 
mile in Calhoun County. This was the heaviest raccoon population 
encountered during their fur resource study of Illinois, which indicates 
the importance of the Illinois and Mississippi River bottomland forest. 
Beginning in the 1940 's the raccoon population began to increase, and 
it is now abundant in both the Illinois and Mississippi valleys. 

Furbearer harvest studies were obtained from Dave Erickson, small 
game biologist for the Missouri Department of Conservation. Tables 50-53 
illustrates the increased fur harvest of raccoons in the counties of 
Missouri bordering Pools 24, 25, and 26 on the Mississippi, which is 
indicative of the increase in raccoon population bordering the Mis- 
sissippi. Fur harvest figures from the Missouri DOC indicate than the 
northeast portion of the state consistently harvests more raccoons. The 
rising market value of pelts the last few years has resulted in the 
large increase of raccoons harvested in 1975 and 1976 (Table 49). 



177 



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180 




181 



The nine-foot channel affected raccoon populations in several 
ways. An increase in water area initially provided more feeding 
habitat for raccoons, but in recent years sedimentation reduced the 
quality and quantity of aquatic food. Slower current velocity and 
deeper water as a result of the nine-foot channel coupled with in- 
creased agricultural runoff have silted in valuable marsh areas which 
provide feeding areas for raccoons. Extensive bottomland clearing 
made in conjunction with the implementation of the nine-foot channel 
along the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers in Calhoun County destroyed 
habitat, forcing raccoons into the uplands (Brown and Yeager, 1943: 
463). 

Population data for raccoons found exclusively in the bottomland 
forest of the Illinois and Mississippi are not available: therefore, a 
quantitative interpretation of raccoon populations affected by the nine- 
foot channel is not possible. 

Mink 

The mink, an animal that is highly adaptable and at home on land 
or in the water, was reported by Yeager (1949: 60) as being affected 
by the Calhoun Point inundation on Pool 26 of the Illinois River less 
than any other fur species. 

The abundance of mink is a function of shoreline: the more shore- 
line, the greater the potential population of this species. The 
amount of shoreline decreased in the lower third of Pools 24-26 with 
the submergence of islands; shoreline was enhanced in the middle third 
of the pools, and remained about the same in the upper third. 

Therefore, potential mink habitat both decreased and increased as 
a result of the 9-foot channel project. Overall the losses and 
benefits probably balanced. Although no quantitative data on mink 
inhabiting the bottoms are available, narrative reports for the Cal- 
houn and Batchtown units of the Mark Twain Refuge system indicate that 
mink populations fluctuated as a result of pool operations 
during the 1940 's and early 1950' s. The populations increased steadily 
until the mid- 1 960' s and then declined. This decline is presumably a 
result of two factors: (1) a loss of marsh habitat attributed to sedi- 
mentation, and (2) trapping pressure (Tables 50-53) . 

182 



Other Furbearers 

Several other furbearers occur in the bottomland forest of Pools 
24-26 of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. Furbearers that occupied 
high semi-dry bottoms were adversely affected by inundation. Yeager 
(1949: 60, 61) indicated that striped skunks, both red and gray foxes, 
and opossums were evicted from flooded bottoms at Calhoun Point, which 
is in Pool 26 at the confluence of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. 
No quantitative data are available for furbearers inhabiting the bottoms 
of Pools 24-26. Fur harvest records for the Missouri counties bor- 
dering the project area are given in Tables 50-53. However, these 
figures include data for areas other than the bottomlands bordering the 
Mississippi. It is felt that inundation of bottomlands in Pools 24-26 
as a result of the nine-foot channel had an adverse effect on furbearers 
that occupy this habitat. 

White-Tailed Deer 

As a result of forest clearing and hunting pressure, white-tailed 
deer had been extirpated from Illinois and Missouri in the early 1900' s. 
By the 1930' s as a result of reintroductions and immigration, the 
deer population began to increase until it had recovered sufficiently 
to allow sport hunting to reopen in the 1950 's in most counties of 
Illinois and Missouri. The first deer were observed on the Mark Twain 
National Wildlife Refuge (Calhoun and Batchtown Divisions) in 1950. 

The bottomland forest of the lower Illinois and Mississippi Rivers 
provides some of the best habitat for deer in the western portion of 
Illinois. The heavily wooded section near Beardstown has one of the 
largest populations found along the length of the Illinois River. Deer 
kill figures for counties bordering the Illinois River were obtained 
from Forrest Loomis, deer biologist for the Illinois Department of Con- 
servation (Table 54) . They include deer killed in both upland and 
bottomland areas. Actual numbers of deer inhabiting bottomland forest 
are not available, but the comparative distribution of deer populations 
along the Illinois valley are reflected in the distribution of the kill. 



183 



Table 54 

Illinois Deer Kill Figures for Counties Bordering 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, Pools 24, 25, and 26 



1974 1975 1976 



County Harvest HS Harvest HS Harvest HS 

Schuyler 244 3.6 330 3.5 311 3.4 

Cass 116 5.4 82 8.2 103 6.5 

Brown 245 4.0 312 3.8 317 3.5 

Morgan 72 5.1 115 4.5 82 6.0 

Pike 461 3.4 577 3.4 527 3.5 

Scott 79 4.6 99 5.2 97 5.0 

Calhoun 133 5.3 132 6.7 133 6.4 

Greene 101 4.8 118 4.7 120 4.0 

Jersey 46 9.9 48 10.8 48 10.0 

Madison 28 8.9 44 7.3 41 6.8 

ttS = Hunter success, number of hunters/number of deer killed. 



184 



The removal of vast acreages of bottomland forest in preparation 
for impounding waters in Pools 24, 25, and 26 resulted in the loss of 
much potentially important deer range. The greatest single area of loss 
occurred between Grafton and Hardin in Pool 26. 

In Missouri the largest population of deer occurs in the southern 
portion of the state, but sizeable numbers are found in the bottomlands 
adjacent to Pools 24, 25, and 26. Deer kill figures for the counties 
bordering Pools 24, 25, and 26 were obtained from Wayne Porath, deer 
biologist with the Missouri Department of Conservation (Table 55 ) . Like 
the figures from Illinois, they include deer killed in both upland and 
bottomland areas but represent the distribution of deer killed along 
the Mississippi valley. It was estimated that from 30-40 deer per 
square mile occupy the bottomland timber of Pools 24, 25, and 26. The 
continued clearing of bottomland timber throughout Illinois and Missouri 
as a result of intensified agricultural practices has reduced deer habitat 
and increased the value of the remaining Illinois and Mississippi River 
bottomland forest. Further destruction of bottomland timber through 
clearing or inundation would adversely affect the deer population. 

Squirrels 

Two species of squirrels occupy the floodplain forest of the 
Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. The fox squirrel, usually the most 
numerous, occupies both extensive and small tracts of woods, while the 
grey squirrel, which is often less abundant, usually occurs only in ex- 
tensive tracts of mature woodlands. The main food source of both species 
is mast of hardwood trees and flowers, fruits, and buds of elms and 
maples. Mature trees also provide hollows for breeding and protection. 
The nine-foot channel project adversely affected squirrel populations 
in two ways: (1) logging of mature trees in preparation for inunda- 
tion, and (2) increased water levels which affected survival of mature 
trees. 

The Illinois River bottomland can support a density of up to two 
squirrels per acre, depending on the quality of the habitat (personal 
communication, January 24, 1978, S. Havera, squirrel biologist, Illinois 



185 



Table 55 

Missouri Deer Kill Figures for Counties Bordering 
the Mississippi River, Pools 24, 25, and 26 



1954 


St. Charles 
2 a 


Lincoln 
12 a 


Pike 
20 a 


Ralls 


1955 


7 a 


17 a 


15 a 




1956 


ll a 


ll a 


17 a 




1957 


12 a 


26 a 


29 a 




1958 


42 a 


41 a 


51 a 




1959 


132 


181 


ISO 


60 a 


1960 


178 


227 


195 


47 a 


1961 


121 


137 a 


201 


56 a 


1962 


186 


141 


138 


213 


1963 


182 


162 


1S8 


49 a 


1964 


218 


167 


186 


195 


1965 


209 


106 a 


199 


66 a 


1966 


217 


155 


203 


248 


1967 


149 a 


lll a 


207 


96 a 


1968 


163 


119 


209 


249 


1969 


257 


186 


248 


140 a 


1970 


230 


165 


263 


377 


1971 


262 


186 


315 


414 


1972 


330 


198 


309 


362 


1973 


278 


224 


406 


514 


1974 


307 


184 a 


264 a 


282 a 


1975 


444 


546 


759 


782 


1976 


446 


388 


599 


624 



sucks only season. 



186 



Natural History Survey, Urbana, Illinois). Don Christison estimated 
that the Mississippi River bottoms of Pools 24, 25, and 26 would support 
one or two squirrels per acre depending on maturity and species compo- 
sition of the bottomland forest (personal communication, January 16, 
1978, Missouri Department of Conservation). A population average of 
one squirrel per acre is considered a normal fall density. It should 
be noted that the addition of forest acreage, which was a result of 
black willows pioneering newly formed mud flats as a result of increased 
sedimentation, provides little additional habitat. Black willows are 
of minimal importance to squirrels and provide neither food nor nesting 
sites. 

The nine-foot channel project had an adverse effect on squirrel 
population by the destruction of habitat through inundation and clearing 
of bottomland forest. Also, as a result of this loss of timber and 
the creation of more edge habitat, the species composition changed from 
proportionally more grey squirrels to proportionally more fox squirrels, 
as was noted at Calhoun Point (Yeager, 1949: 61). 

Rabbits 

The cottontail rabbit is ubiquitous throughout Illinois and Missouri, 
Hoffmeister and Mohr indicate that the rabbit is found along fencerows 
and margins of wood lots, forest edges, and dry bottomlands (1972: 194). 
The high, semi-dry bottomlands of the Mississippi valley provided 
habitat for the cottontail before the implementation of the nine-foot 
channel. Many of these areas have now been inundated by the nine-foot 
project and have limited populations of rabbits in the bottomland (Green, 
1960: 4). Yeager (1949: 61) indicated that rabbits were notably scarce 
on Calhoun Point even before inundation, a result of the very low, wet 
nature of the bottomland. 

Quantitative population figures are not available for cottontail 
rabbits in the Mississippi and Illinois River bottomland. Removal of 
bottomland timber and subsequent inundation would have had an adverse 
effect on cottontail rabbit populations in the Illinois and Mississippi 
River bottoms. 



187 



SUMMARY 

1. Several factors are responsible for increased sedimentation 
and turbidity in the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. Agricultural 
practices, such as clearing of fencerows and bottomland timber, plus 
increased acreages of row crops have created serious erosion problems 
contributing to the sediment load. In addition, municipal sewage 
effluents, construction activities, and certain industrial discharges 
add to the sediment loads. 

2. A major long-term effect of the 9-foot channel project was to 
increase turbidity and the rate of sedimentation. In general, 

in backwater areas the sedimentation rate is 
highest in the deeper waters. The construction of the navigation 
dams increased the water levels at the dam sites in Pools 24, 25, and 26 
by 9, 10, and 9 feet respectively. The dams also slowed the velocity 
of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, reducing their silt-carrying 
capacity and resulting in a greater sedimentation rate. Increased 
barge traffic associated with the 9-foot channel increased turbidity 
in two ways: (a) movement of the barges and the associated towboat 
resuspends sediment, and (b) the wake from barges contributes to bank 
erosion and resuspends sediment in shallow areas. During rising river 
stages this resuspended sediment is carried into the backwaters where 
it settles, eventually destroying fish and aquatic wildlife habitats- 

3. Backwater habitat for some species of fish, such as carp, 
bass, and sunfishes, increased following impoundment of the Mississippi 
River by navigation dams. Within the study area of Pools 24, 25, and 
26, there is a total of approximately 73 square miles of aquatic habi- 
tat at normal pool elevations. Although this certainly represents a 
gain in backwater or slackwater habitat, pre-construction acreage was 
unavailable for comparison. Physical loss or physical alteration of 
backwater habitat as a result of sedimentation has been, and continues 
to be a problem. 



188 



4. No specific information was available on the effects of Dams 
24, 25, and 26 on fish migration. 

5. In the period 1903 to 1944, several fishes which prefer a 
clear-water environment with sand or gravel bottoms and appreciable 
current declined or disappeared from the upper Mississippi River: the 
Ozark minnow, blackfin shiner, redfin shiner, steelcolor shiner, 
Southern redbelly dace, freckled madtom, and crystal darter. In addi- 
tion to these forage fishes, three commercial fishes (pallid sturgeon, 
river redhorse, and brown bullhead) and a predatory fish (alligator gar) 
virtually disappeared from the upper Mississippi. The pallid sturgeon 
was considered rare in the upper Mississippi River in the period 1876- 
1903, and was thought to prefer a swift-water habitat. The river red- 
horse is intolerant of turbidity and siltation, and the brown bullhead 
is also considered sensitive to turbid waters. These changes in the 
fish fauna of the upper Mississippi River are probably related to reduc- 
tions in current velocity caused by the navigation dams and to increased 
sedimentation and turbidity brought about by both navigation dams and 
increased sediment input from tributaries. 

6. Winter drawdowns in Pools 24, 25, and 26 in the 1940*s often 
resulted in large fish kills. Winter drawdown has not been practiced 
by the St. Louis District since 1970. 

7. There is very little information on the actual impact on 
fishes of maintenance dredging of the channel, disposal of dredged 
material, and the construction and maintenance of regulatory works such 
as dikes and bank revetments. Dredging and deposition of dredge 
spoil may affect fish food organisms. Fish are known to congregate 

in the tailwaters below the dams, and fishermen likewise congregate 
there. The fish probably gather below the dams for several reasons: 
(a) the water is swift and well-oxygenated below the dams, (b) the dams 
may impede the normal upstream movements of certain fishes, and (c) 
there is an abundance of food organisms, such as insects, which are 
continually swept off the dams and locks. In a similar fashion, 
wing dikes and riprap may offer good habitat and a source of insect 
food for certain species of fish. 

189 



8. Fish surveys conducted in 1934, 1942, and 1967 with hoop nets 
show that the number of game fish caught in the Alton Pool of the 
Illinois River declined by at least 78 percent between 1934 and 1942, and 
declined further from 1942 to 1967. The catch of non-game fish 
increased by 50 to 74 percent between 1934 and 1942, primarily as a 
result of increases in gizzard shad, carpsuckers, and carp. 

9. Two major changes which may have affected fish populations in 
the study reach of the Illinois River in the period 1934-1942 were: 

(1) Lock and Dam 26 at Alton was put into operation 1 May, 1938, and 

(2) diversion of water from Lake Michigan into the upper reach of 
the Illinois Waterway at Chicago was reduced from 6,500 cubic feet 
per second (cfs) to 5,000 cfs starting 31 December 1935 and further 
reduced from 5,000 to 1,500 cfs starting 31 December 1938. Domestic 
pumpage was allowed, in addition to these amounts of diversion. 

10. In a 1942 survey of fish populations in the Alton Pool of 
the Illinois River, more game fish were taken in Meredosia Lake 
(66.35 game fish per net-day) than in side channels or the main 
channel of the river (greatest catch: 26.02 game fish per net-day 
in the channel at Kampsville). Meredosia Lake has since been de- 
graded by an accumulation of oxygen-demanding sediment, which probably 
plays a role in occasional fish kills observed in the summer. 

11. The commercial harvest of fish from the study reach of 
the Illinois River has been relatively constant since 1950, in 
contrast to upstream reaches where the harvest has shown a steady 
decline since 1950. Starting in 1962, the Alton Pool of the Illinois 
River consistently has ranked second in production among four pools in 
the Illinois River with commercial fisheries. Some commercial 
fishermen report that they do not fish the main channel borders of 
the Illinois River, because the currents and wave wash associated 
with the passage of barges collapse their nets. 



190 



12. In 1963, the condition factor of carp, a commercial species, 
was substantially better in the study reach than in upstream pools, 
probably because more food items, such as fingernail clams, were avail- 
able on the bottom in the study reach. Fingernail clams and snails had 
been eliminated from upstream reaches in the 1950' s, apparently due to 
some upstream source of toxicity. Between 1963 and 1975, the condition 
factor of carp declined in the Illinois River as a whole, and the declines 
were relatively greater in the study reach, so that differences in carp 
condition in the study area and upstream areas are not as great as 
formerly. Boat traffic and dredging may affect commercial species of 
fish and the organisms on which they feed. 

13. The mussel fishery in the study area of the Illinois River 
declined due to pollution and overharvesting prior to completion of the 
9-foot navigation system. The increasing sediment input from tribu- 
tary streams, the dams associated with the 9-foot channel, and the 
decrease in Lake Michigan Diversion may have affected the mussel fauna 
by reducing the current velocity and increasing sedimentation in some 
areas. Dredging operations to maintain the navigation channel can 
destroy mussel beds. The increase in boat traffic which resulted from 
construction of the 9-foot channel has probably affected mussels. 
Barges resuspend bottom sediments and temporarily draw water away from 
shallow areas as they pass. Large pleasure boats and barges produce 
wave wash along the shores. All these disturbances can adversely 
affect mussels in the Illinois River. 

14. We were not able to find any information documenting historical 
changes in mussel populations in the study area of the Mississippi. 
Navigation dams in other reaches of the upper Mississippi River have 
slowed the current and facilitated deposition of sediment, with 
adverse effects on mussels such as yellow sand-shells ( Lampsilis ano- 
dontoides ) . Movements of fish which serve as mussel hosts may have 

been impeded by dams. Dredging, deposition of spoil, and boat traffic 
may have detrimental effects as described above for Illinois fishes. 



191 



15. Between 1915 and 1964, the average density of midges in the 
study reach of the Illinois River increased from 1.3 to 353 per square 
meter, and the number of oligochaete worms increased from 2.6 to 2,579 
per square meter, indicating the presence of soft mud bottoms, an in- 
crease in the organic load in the river, and slight decreases in the 
average dissolved oxygen levels. Snails and fingernail clams also 
increased between 1915 and 1964, as did leeches, some of which prey 

on clams and snails. Fingernail clams generally thrive in areas where 
there is a moderate amount of organic pollution, and where soft mud 
bottoms are available. Between 1964 and the 1970' s, the fingernail clam 
populations declined slightly (the declines are very slight, and perhaps 
insignificant), Asiatic clams invaded the river, and the snails 
either disappeared entirely or were reduced to such low numbers that 
they did not show up in the recent collections. Asiatic clams probably 
first entered the Illinois River in 1970-1971. Some toxic agent 
present in the lower Illinois River may be eliminating the snails. 
Pesticides may be implicated, since snails exposed to Illinois River 
water rapidly accumulate dieldrin (within 24 hours) . 

16. Benthic studies done prior to the construction of the navi- 
gation dams on the Mississippi were concerned with areas outside the 
study reach. 

17. Since we were not able to find any surveys of the plankton in 
the study reach of the Mississippi prior to the mid-1930's, we were, 
not able to compare plankton populations in the Mississippi before and 
after construction of the navigation dams. 

18. Comparison of plankton data on the Illinois River gathered by 
Kofoid (1903 and 1904) in 1898 with recent data gathered at the same 
season, under comparable low-flow conditions, shows that: (a) the 
average number of small diatoms (Bacillariophyta ) doubled, (b) the number 
of large diatoms remained the same, (c) small green algae ( Chlorophyta ) 
increased, (d) large green algae declined, (e) blue-green algae 



192 



( Cyanophyta ) declined markedly by a factor of 80 to 100, (f) rotifers 
declined by a factor of 10, and (g) copepods increased slightly. The 
decline in blue-green algae may be attributable to increased suspended 
solids and turbidity in the Illinois River. The diatoms probably per- 
sisted or increased because they can tolerate the reduced light and 
increased abrasion associated with suspended sediment. Because the 
diatoms persisted, and because they are at least as sensitive to toxicants 
as other algae (such as blue-greens) , the decline in blue-greens probably 
is not attributable to toxicity. The change in phytoplankton and the 
increase in the suspended solids load of the lower Illinois River may 
have impaired the feeding of rotifers, thereby reducing their popula- 
tions. Rotifers are an important food for the fry of many game fish, 
such as bluegill, so the reduction in rotifers might have had a 
significant impact on the growth and survival of fish fry. 

19. Wetland vegetation was inundated when the 9-foot channel project 
raised water levels and initially created additional water areas. However. 
new areas were pioneered, resulting in expanded aquatic plant and marsh 
acreage. 

20. Since increases in water levels can destroy wetland 
vegetation after it has become established in shallow water and on 
exposed mud flats in the summer, the stabilizing effects of the dams in 
most years between 1948-1968 on Pool 26 resulted in excellent plant 
growth. Pool 25 was subject to frequent and sometimes severe flue-, 
tuations in 1948-1951, 1954, 1958, 1961, and 1967, which adversely 
affected wetland vegetation. 

21. The greatest adverse effect of the 9-foot channel project 
on wetland vegetation has resulted from an increase in turbidity and 
sedimentation. Plants need sunlight for photosynthesis. Turbidity 



193 



reduces the clarity of the water, thereby limiting the amount of 
sunlight reaching submerged and emergent aquatic plants. Turbidity 
has extirpated the submerged aquatic plants and reduced marsh acreage 
in the unprotected backwater areas of Pools 24-26. 

22. Sedimentation has produced extremely soft bottoms which make 
it difficult for aquatic and marsh plants to gain or retain a root- 
hold when exposed to wave action. Sedimentation also affects these 
plants by physically smothering plant beds and partially filling 
backwater areas, thus reducing water acreage and limiting the diversity 
of habitats available for plant colonization by creating a uniform 
bottom. 

Although aquatic and marsh plants were adversely affected, sedi- 
mentation has filled shallow areas, creating mud flats which at present 
exceed preproject acreage. The moist soil plants that volunteer on 
these mud flats were benefited by increased sedimentation. 

23. The 9-foot navigation project benefited waterfowl populations 
by creating many thousands of acres of shallow water. Increased 
backwaters provided shallow areas which supported both marsh and sub- 
merged aquatic plant growth. The mallard has been the principal 
species of waterfowl benefited by the project. Canada, blue, and snow 
geese use of the project area also has increased as a result of manage- 
ment of habitat by states, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serivce, and 
private duck clubs, to increase the production of both natural and 
artificially-seeded food plants. However, as a result of man-made pool level 
fluctuations during several years in Pools 25 and 26, waterfowl feeding 
areas were degraded. 

24. Increased sedimentation and turbidity have led to the loss of 
submerged aquatic plants in most of the project area. This loss of plant 
food has been responsible for declining numbers of wigeon, green-wing 
teal, and lesser scaup in the project area. In addition, increased 



194 



sedimentation has filled shallow areas in the backwaters which once 
supported marsh plants, destroying habitat. The temporary benefit of 
sedimentation to waterfowl has been the creating of mud flats which 
produce moist soil plants when proper water level manipulation occurs. 

25. The 9-foot channel project affected bald eagles by initiating 
an earlier freeze-up on the lower part of the pools, restricting the 
eagles' feeding area. However, the benefit of open tailwaters in 
midwinter probably outweighs the early-winter loss of feeding grounds. 

26. The initial increase in marsh areas as a result of the 9-foot 
channel benefited common gallinule, sora, Virginia rail, heron, and 
egret populations. The subsequent loss of marsh habitat due to sedi- 
mentation and the increase in turbidity, restricting sight feeding, 
has adversely affected these birds. 

27. The implementation of the 9-foot channel project inundated 
existing mud flats used as feeding areas for shorebirds. Increased 
sedimentation has recreated and produced more mud flats thereby 
increasing feeding areas for shorebirds. Gulls and terns were bene- 
fited by the increased water acreage as a result of the 9-foot channel 
project. 

28. Bottomland timber was cleared in preparation for the 9-foot 
channel project, thereby destroying habitat for woodcock, snipe, song- 
birds, and woodpeckers. There was little effect on cormorants, bob- 
white quail, ring-necked pheasants, mourning doves, and wild turkeys. 

29. The construction of the 9-foot channel project initially 
benefited muskrats by increasing marsh areas. However, as a result of 
increased sedimentation and subsequent destruction of aquatic and marsh 
plants, much of the early benefits have been lost. 



195 



30. The inundation of bottomland timber by the 9-foot channel 
project reduced the habitat for raccoon, striped skunk, red and 
grey foxes, opossum, white-tailed deer, fox and gray squirrels, and 
rabbits, but had little effect on beaver and mink. 



196 



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20,1 



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209 



APPENDIX 
Table 56 



List of Common and Scientific Names 



Common Name 



PLANTS 



Scientific Name 



American lotus 

Arrowhead 

Black willow 

Bushy pondweed (Naiad) 

Cattail 

Coontail 

Cron 

Cottonwood 

Duck potato 

Elm 

Leafy pondweed 

Long-leaf pondweed 

Maples 

Marsh mallow 

Marsh smartweed 

Nutgrasses 

Rice cutgrass 

River bulrush 

Sago pondweed 

Sedges 

Silver (soft) maple 

Softstem bulrush 

Spike rush 

Smartweeds 

White water lily 

Wild millet 



Nelumbo lutea 
Lophotocarpus calycinus 
Salix nigra 
Najas guadalupensis 
Typha latifolia 
Ceratophyllum demersum 
Zea mays 

Populus deltoides 
Sagittaria latifolia 
Ulmus spp. 

Potamogeton foliosus 
Potamogeton nodosus 
Acer spp. 

Hibiscus militaris 
Polygonum coccineum 
Cyperus spp. 
Leers ia oryzoides 
Scirpus fluviatilis 
Potamogeton pecinatus 
Scirpus spp. 
Acer saccharinum 
Scirpus validus 
Eleocharis palustris 
Polygonum spp. 
Nymphaea tuberosa 
Echinochloa muricata 



BIRDS 



American avocet 
American bittern 
American golden plover 
American redstart 
American woodcock 
Bald eagle 



Recurvirostra americana 
Botaurus lentiginosus 
Pluvialis dominica 
Setophaga ruticilla 
Philohela minor 
Haliaeetus leucoceph a lus 



Sheet 1 of 8 



210 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



Birds continued 



Bewick's wren 

Black-bellied plover 

Black-capped chickadee 

Black-crowned night heron 

Black tern 

Blue goose 

Bobwhite quail 

Buff-breasted snadpiper 

Canada goose 

Canvasback 

Carolina wren 

Caspian tern 

Cattle egret 

Common egret 

Common gallinule 

Common snipe 

Common tern 

Double-crested cormorant 

Downy woodpecker 

Dunlin 

Forster's tern 

Franklin's gull 

Great blue heron 

Great-crested flychatcher 

Greater yellowlegs 

Green heron 

Green-wing teal 

Gulls 

Hairy woodpecker 

Herring gull 

House wren 

Killdeer 

Least bittern 

Least sandpiper 

Lesser scaup 

Lesser yellowlegs 

Long-billed dowitcher 

Mallard 

Mourning dove 

Pectoral sandpiper 

Pileated woodpecker 

Pintail 

Prothonotary warbler 



Thryomanes bewickii 
Squatarola squatarola 
Parus atricapillus 
Nycticorax nycticorax 
Chilidonias niger 
Anser caerulescens 
Colinus virginianus 
Tryngites subruficollis 
Branta canadensis 
Ay thy a valisineria 
Thryothorus ludovicianus 
Hydroprogne caspia 
Bubulcus ibis 
Casmerodius albus 
Gallinula chloropus 
Capella gallinago 
Sterna hirundo 
Phalacroxorax auritus 
Dendrocopos pubescens 
Erolia alpina 
Sterna forsteri 
Larus pipixcan 
Ardea herodias 
Myiarchus crinitus 
Totanus melanoleucus 
Butorides virescens 
Anas crecca carolinensis 
Larus spp. 

Dendrocopos villosus 
Larus argentatus 
Troglodytes aedon 
Charadrius vociferus 
Ixobrychus exilis 
Evolia minutilla 
Ay thy a affinis 
Totanus flavipes 
L-imnodromus scolopaceus 
Anas platyrhynchos 
Zenaidura macroura 
Erolia melanotos 
Dryocopus pileatus 
Anas acuta 
Protonotaria citrea 



211 



Sheet 2 of 8 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



Birds continued 



Red-bellied woodpecker 
Red-eyed vireo 
Red-headed woodpecker 
Ring-necked pheasant 
Sanderling 
Semipalmated plover 
Semipalmated sandpiper 
Short-billed dowitcher 
Snow goose 
Solitary sandpiper 
Sora rail 
Spotted sandpiper 
Stilt sandpiper 
Tree swallow 
Tufted titmouse 
Virginia rail 
Warbling vireo 
Western sandpiper 
White-breasted nuthatch 
Wigeon 
Wild turkey 
Willet 

Wilson's phalarope 
Wood duck 
Wood pewee 
Wood thrush 
Yellow-shafted flicker 
Yellow-throat 



Centurus carolinus 
Vireo olivaceus 
Melanerpes erythrocephalus 
Phasianus colchicus 
Crocethia alba 
Charadrius semipalmatus 
Ereunetes pusillus 
Limnodromus grisebus 
Anser caerulescens 
Tringa solitaria 
Porzana Carolina 
Actitis macularia 
Micropalama himantopus 
Irodoprocne i bicolor 
Parus bicolor 
Rallus limicola 
Vireo gilvus 
Ereunetes mauri 
Sitta carolinensis 
Anas americana 
Meleagris gallopavo 
Catoptrophorus semipalmatus 
Steganopus tricolor 
Aix sponsa 
Contopus virens 
Hylocichla mustelina 
Colaptes auratus 
Geothlypis trichas 



MAMMALS 



Badger 

Beaver 

Bobcat 

Cottontail rabbit 

Coyote 

Fox squirrel 

Grey fox 

Grey squirrel 

Mink 

Muskrat 

Opossum 



Taxidea taxus 

Castor canadensis 

Lynx rufus 

Sylvilagus floridanus 

Canis latrans 

Sciurus niger 

Urocyon cinereoargenteus 

Sciurus carolinensis 

Mustela vis on 

Ondatra zibethicus 

Didelphis marsupialis 



Sheet 3 of 8 



212 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



lals continued 



Raccoon 
Red fox 
Spotted skunk 
Striped skunk 
Weasel 
White-tailed deer 



Procyon lotor 
Vulpes vulpes 
Spilogale putorius 
Mephitis mephitis 
Mustela sp. 
Dama virginianus 



FISH 



Alligator gar 
American eel 
Banded darter 
Banded kiliifish 
Banded sculpin 
Bantam sunfish 
Bigmouth buffalo 
Bigmouth shiner 
Black buffalo 
Black bullhead 
Black crappie 
Blackchin shiner 
Blacknose dace 
Blacknose shiner 
Blackside darter 
Blackstripe topminnow 
Blue catfish 
Blue sucker 
Bluebreast darter 
Bluegill 

Bluntnose darter 
Bluntnose minnow 
Bowf in 

Brook silverside 
Brook stickleback 
Brown bullhead 
Bullhead minnow 
Burbot 
Carp 

Channel catfish 
Chestnut lamprey 
Common shiner 
Creek chub 
Crystal darter 



Lepisosteus spatula 
Anguilla rostrata 
Etheostoma zonale 
Fundulus diaphanus menona 
Cottus carolinae 
Lepomis svmmetricus 
Ictiobus cyprinellus 
Notropis dorsalis 
Ictiobus niger 
Ictalurus melas 
Pomoxis nigromaculatus 
Notropis heterodon 
Rhinichthvs atratulus 
Notropis heterolepis 
Percina maculata 
Fundulus rotatus 
Ictalurus furcatus 
Cycleptus elongatus 
Etheostoma camurum 
Lepomis macrochirus 
Etheostoma chlorosomum 
Pimephales notatus 
Amia calva 
Labidesthes sicculus 
Culaea inconstans 



Ictalurus nebulosus 



Pimephales vigilax 
Lota lota 
Cyprinus carpio 
Ictalurus punctatus 
Ichthyomyzon castaneus 
Notropis cornutus 
Semotilus altromaculatus 
Ammocrypta asprella 



Sheet 4 of 8 



213 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



Fish continued 



Pumpkinseed 
Quillback carpsucker 
Rainbow darter 
Rainbow trout 
Red shiner 
Redear sunfish 
Redfin shiner 
River carpsucker 
River darter 
River redhorse 
River shiner 
Rock bass 
Rosyface shiner 
Sand shiner 
Sauger 

Shorthead redhorse 
Shortnose gar 
Shovelnose sturgeon 
Silver chub 
Silver lamprey 
Silver redhorse 
Silverband shiner 
Silver jaw minnow 
Silvery minnow 
Skipjack herring 
Slenderhead darter 
Smallmouth bass 
Smallmouth buffalo 
Southern redbelly dace 
Speckled chub 
Spotfin shiner 
Spottail shiner 
Spotted sucker 
Star he ad topminnow 
Steelcolor shiner 
Stonecat 
Stoneroller 
Striped shiner 
Suckermouth minnow 
Tadpole madtom 
Trout perch 
Walleye 
Warmouth 



Lepomis gibbosus 
Carpiodes cvprinus 
Etheostoma caeruleum 
Salmo gairdneri 
Notropis lutrensis 
Lepomis microlophus 
Notropis umbratilis 
Carpiodes carpio 
Percina shumardi 
Moxo stoma carina turn 
Notropis blennius 
Ambloplites rupestris 
Notropis rubellus 
Notropis stramineus 
Stizostedion canadense 
Moxo stoma macrolepidotum 
Lepisosteus platostomus 
Scaphirhvnchus platorhynchus 
Hybopsis storeiana 
Ichthyomyzon unicuspis 
Moxostoma anisurum 
Notropis shumardi 
Ericymba buccata 
Hybognathus nuchalis 
Alosa chrysochloris 
Percina phoxocephala 
Micropterus dolomieui 
Ictiobus bubalus 
Phoxinus erythrogaster 
Hybopsis aestivalis 
Notropis spilopterus 
Notropis hudsonius 
Minytrema melanops 
Fundulus notti 
Notropis whipplei 
Noturus flavus 
Campostoma anomalum 
Notropis chrysocephalus 
Phenacobius mirabilis 
Noturus gyrinus 
Percopsis omiscomaycus 
Stizostedion vitreum 
Lepomis gulosus 



Sheet 5 of 8 



214 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



Fish continued 



Duskystripe shiner 
Emerald shiner 
Fantail darter 
Fathead minnow 
Flathead catfish 
Flier 

Freckled madtom 
Freshwater drum 
Ghost shiner 
Gizzard shad 
Golden redhorse 
Golden shiner 
Goldeye 

Grass pickerel 
Green sunfish 
Highfin carpsucker 
Hornyhead chub 
Iowa darter 
Johnny darter 
Lake chubsucker 
Lake sturgeon 
Largemouth bass 
Least darter 
Logperch 
Longear sunfish 
Longnose gar 
Mimic shiner 
Mooneye 
Mosquitofish 
Mud darter 
Mudminnow 
Muskellunge 
Northern hog sucker 
Northern pike 
Orangespotted sunfish 
Orangethroat darter 
Ozark minnow 
Paddlefish 
Pallid shiner 
Pallid sturgeon 
Pirate perch 
Pugnose minnow 
Pugnose shiner 



Notropis pilsbryi 
Notropis atherinoides 
Etheostoma flabellare 
Pimephales promelas 
Pylodictis olivaris 
Centrarchus macropterus 
Noturus nocturnus 
Aplodinotus grunniens 
Notropis buchanani 
Dorosoma cepedianum 
Moxostoma erythrurum 
Notemigonus chysoleucas 
Hiodon alosoides 
Esox americanus 



Lepomis cyanellus 
Carpiodes velifer 
Nicomis biguttatus 
Etheostoma exile 
Etheostoma nigrum 
Erimyzon sucetta 
Acipenser fulvescens 
Micropterus salmoides 
Etheostoma microperca 
Percina carprodes 
Lepomis megalotis 
Lepisosteus osseus 
Notropis volucellus 
Hiodon tergisus 
Gambusia affinis 
Etheostoma asprigene 
Umbra limi 
Esox masquinongy 
Hypentelium nigricans 
Esox lucius 
Lepomis humilis 
Etheostoma spectabile 
Dionda nubila 
Polyodon spathula 
Notropis amnis 
Scaphirhynchus albus 
Aphredoderus sayanus 
Notropis emiliae 
Notropis anogenus 



Sheet 6 of 8 



215 



Table 56 (continued) 



Common Name 



Scientific Name 



Fish continued 



Weed shiner 
Western sand darter 
White bass 
White catfish 
White crappie 
White sucker 
Yellow bass 
Yellow bullhead 
Yellow perch 



Notropis texanus 
Ammocrypta clara 
Morone chrysops 
let alums catus 
Pomoxis annularis 
Catastomus commersoni 
Morone missis sippiensi 
Ictalurus natalis 
Perca flavescens 



ZOOPLANKTON 



Copepods 
Crustaceans 
Rotifers 
Water fleas 



Copepoda 
Crustacea 
Rotifera 
Cladocera 



Blue-green algae 
Desmids, dinoflagellates 
Diatoms 

Euglenoid algae 
Green algae 
Yellow-brown algae 



Cyanophyta 

Pyrrophyta 

Bacillariophyta 

Euglenophyta 

Chlorophyta 

Chrysophyta 



BOTTOM FAUNA 



Asiatic clam 
Asiatic clams 
Beetles 
Burrowing mayfly 

Caddisflies 

Clams 

Dobson flies 

Dragonflies 

Fingernail clam 

Fingernail clams 

Flatworms 

Flies 

Leeches 

Maple leaf 



Corbicula manilensis 

Corbiculidae 

Coleoptera 

Hexagenia and Pentagenia; Eexagenia bi- 

lineata; Hexagenia rigida 
Order Trichoptera 
Pelecypoda 
Neuroptera 
Odonata 

Musculium transversum = Sphaerium transversum 
Sphaeriidae 
Turbellaria 
Diptera 
Hirudinea 
Quadrula quadrula 

Sheet 7 of 8 



216 



Common Name 



Table 56 (concluded) 



Scientific Name 



Bottom Fauna continued 



Mayflies 

Midges 

Monkey-face 

Mussels 

Oligochaete worms 

Planaria 

Pond snail 

Snails 

Snail 

Snail 

Three-horned warty-back 

Three-ridge 

Tubificid worms 

Washboard 

Yellow sand-shell 



Order Ephemeroptera 

Family Chironomidae 

Quadrula metanevra 

Unionidae 

Oligochaeta 

Tricladida 

Physa 

Order Gastropoda 

Lioplax subcarinatus 

Valvata tricarinata 

Obliquaria reflexa 

Amblema plicata 

Tubificidae 

Megalonaias gigantea 

Lamp si lis anodontoides 






Sheet 8 of 8 



217